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Charity Efforts Up to Par

by Chris Pinkert / St. Louis Blues
John Papa couldn’t think of a better way to spend his 60th birthday if he tried.

There he was on Monday, enjoying 18 holes of golf with members of his family, a close friend from the neighborhood and Blues defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk.

And to top off a near perfect day, Papa's team wasn’t doing too bad in the six-person scramble.

“My wife made sure I was able to do this today,” Papa said. “It’s a terrific thing to do. I’ve been thinking about it for a long time but this is my first time at this tournament.”

‘Terrific’ is just one way to describe Monday’s Blues 14 Fund Golf Classic, where Blues players, coaches and management played 18 holes of golf with some of the team’s biggest supporters, including Blues Season Ticket Holders and corporate sponsors. The event raised money for the Blues 14 Fund, the team's charitable trust, which donates money to cancer care and awareness, general health and wellness, education and youth hockey development.

Golf packages started at $2,500 for a foursome, which was then joined by a Blues celebrity in the scramble. Several companies raised more money by sponsoring a hole or bidding on items in the Blues memorabilia auction afterwards. The event also featured a dinner reception.

Items in the live and silent auctions included an opportunity to take a road trip with the team, a Club Level Suite Package, autographed game-worn jerseys and more.

“This is what it’s all about...raising money for the Blues 14 Fund,” said Matt D’Agostini, who played with sponsors from Pepsi. “I’m just glad to be out here and lending a hand. Everyone’s out here having a good time and enjoying the nice weather.”

The Blues 14 Fund was established in 1998 to honor Blues forward Doug Wickenheiser, who passed away in 1999 after a battle with cancer.

Each group at Monday's event kept score, but the truth is, the scores didn’t matter much. The Blues 14 Fund Golf Classic is about raising money for charity while putting names with faces and saying thank you to some of the team’s biggest supporters.

“I think anytime you can get out here and have a little fun when it benefits a great cause like this, I think that’s something we all enjoy doing,” Shattenkirk said.

“I’m happy to be here.”
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