E-Z-GO Vaughn Taylor Championship presented by PotashCorp earns Hospitality Award
The American Junior Golf Association announced the E-Z-GO Vaughn Taylor Championship presented by PotashCorp was honored with the 2015 Hospitality Award, given each year to the tournament committee which creates the best experience for juniors and their families.
Each year, the AJGA presents awards to the tournaments with the best individual hospitality, Junior-Am Fundraising Tournament, charitable giving and volunteer base. Awards are also given to the events with the highest media and social media participation. Finally, the AJGA recognizes the year’s most outstanding golf professional, superintendent and general manager, as well as the most improved event, best new event, best Junior All-Star tournament, best Invitational and overall tournament of the year. Tournament awards for the 2015 season will be presented on-site at 2016 tournaments.
Tournament Chairman Dan Troutman is honored to receive the Hospitality Award for a second time, the first was in 2012. The committee works year-round to ensure a quality tournament experience for volunteers, AJGA staff, players and their families.
“There is a lot of effort put into this event by our volunteers,” Troutman said. “It would not be possible without their dedication and also the support from our more than 30 sponsors, not to mention what Jones Creek Golf Club and its staff adds to the event.”
Over 300 volunteers come to Jones Creek Golf Club during the week to ensure everything is done perfectly. They spend countless hours setting up the course, shuttling players and their families, filling coolers and everything in between. Their hard work not only makes it a smooth week, but eliminates many hours for the AJGA staff.
AJGA Tournament Director Meghan Cobb said she witnessed the tournament committee’s dedication to hospitality during the 2015 event.
“The main focus is simple: the players and their families.” Cobb said. “The committee is the backbone of this tournament because of their dedication and love for junior golf, it has grown over the years into a can’t miss event.”
Players are immediately greeted by a volunteer before being shown to a personalized locker for the week. In a players-only area, professional chefs cook breakfast and lunch on tournament days, and a welcome dinner buffet, complete with a large custom ice sculpture, and concert are complimentary to all families. The champions of the event also receive a number of unique gifts, including custom E-Z-GO belts.
“What Dan and the committee do for the tournament is unbelievable,” Southeast Regional Director Ryan Tahara said. “One of the best things about the event is that they are able to provide a tremendous experience for everyone while still donating money back towards local charities.”
In 2015 alone, $20,000 from the event were given back to the Safe Homes of Augusta, AJGA’s ACE Grant and other local charities. Since 2008, the event has contributed more than $86,000.
From all the attention given to the players and staff, community support, and reducing expenses at every turn helps set the bar for other events.
“We believe our attention to detail makes the difference.” Troutman said. “There are a lot of tournaments that all do various things well. We try to do everything well and add as many services for players and volunteers as we can.”
Troutman believes the Masters, held just down the road in Augusta, sets the standard for every tournament in the world, and that is what motivates the committee to strive to make the E-Z-GO Vaughn Taylor Championship presented by PotashCorp the best it can be.
“With sponsors like E-Z-GO and Potash Corp, we will continue to add new aspects to the tournament,” Troutman said. “On behalf of our 300-plus volunteers, we want to say thank you for acknowledging our efforts.”
The tournament was previously awarded the 2011 Most Improved Tournament of the Year Award, the 2012 Hospitality Award, the 2013 Tournament of the Year Award and the 2014 Volunteer Award. The E-Z-GO Vaughn Taylor Championship presented by PotashCorp returns to the 2016 schedule, July 11-14.