By Ken MacLeod
Patriot Golf Day began seven years ago, raising $1.3 million on the strength of thousands of generous golfers and a handful of very active clubs and sponsors.
This year more than 5,000 courses nationwide will participate and Folds of Honor founder Dan Rooney is hopeful a record $5 million will be raised by golfers donating over Labor Day Weekend.
"All indications are it will be the biggest and best Patriot Day yet," Rooney said.
At least 65 Oklahoma courses are participating in Patriot Day activities and if you’re course is not one of them, you can always make a donation by going to www.foldsofhonor.org.
Rooney will join former President George W. Bush and PGA of America President Ted Bishop on Fox & Friends Friday morning from 5 a.m. to 9 a.m. Bush is the honorary chairman of Patriot Golf Day.
"To have President Bush as our wingman is one of those goose bump moments," Rooney said.
Since its inception in 2007, more than $17 million has been raised through Patriot Golf Day events.
"Aligning ourselves with the Folds of Honor Foundation by hosting Patriot Golf Day events in tribute to those who have given so much is something we’re proud to do both as PGA Professionals and Americans," Bishop said. "We encourage everyone to play golf at their local courses during Labor Day Weekend and support this important cause."
Throughout the holiday weekend, golfers are asked to donate at least $1 for each round of golf, while non-golfers can participate by making a donation to the foundation at its website, Foldsofhonor.Org.
"It is so rewarding to see the golf community come together in support of the children and spouses of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in serving their country," said USGA President Glen Nager. "Thanks to the selfless fundraising efforts of our USGA Members, PGA Professionals, and amateur players across the country, the game of golf is able to do our part to promote and support the mission of Folds of Honor."
For Rooney, who is also a PGA Professional and USGA member, golf is a natural fit for fundraising for the organization.
"With the continued support of PGA Professionals and golfers across the country, the Folds of Honor Foundation can continue to realize its mission of honoring the sacrifice of our nation’s military by educating their legacy," said Rooney. "For the last six years, Patriot Golf Day has provided golfers with a way to show their appreciation for America’s heroes during a holiday weekend meant to honor those who have served. Each year is a chance to raise more awareness and bring more attention to those who are most worthy of our support."