Golf tournament benefits Camp Viola

By Melanie Ruberti | Daily News

March 21, 2014

Teams of golfers teed off at the Highlands Country Club on Thursday to raise money and awareness for Camp Viola.

Camp Viola is a private, non profit organization that brings more than 600 children from surrounding churches to their Christian-based camp for one week during the summer. It was established back in 1928. Neither the children, nor their parents, pay a dime.

Youth Pastor and Camp Viola Board President, Kevin Stringham, said Thursday’s event will allow children in Troup and Meriwether counties to have a once in a life time experience. Stringham said most of those children might not be able to afford camp otherwise.

“Because of events like this, kids will have the opportunity like our children have to go to camp. You can’t put a dollar amount on that,” Stringham said.

“There’s a connectivity that draws us all to the camp,” said Mike Angstadt, executive director of Twin Cedars Youth and Family Services, Inc. “It opens the kids eyes to ministry today that will last for an eternity.”

This was the first time the organization has held a golf tournament as a fundraiser. Around 32 teams signed up to play and more than 60 sponsors donated money or services for the event. The lucky golfer who makes a hole-in-one on hole 17 will win a brand new Ford F-150 from the Mike Patton Ford dealership in LaGrange.

“That is phenomenal,” exclaimed Angstadt. ” I’m so proud to be a part of a community that cares about kids this much.”

“People understand what we’re about and they really want to help,” said Barron Wood, board member of Camp Viola and chairman of the golf tournament.

Camp Viola hopes to raise $15,000 from the golf tournament. But their ultimate goal is to expand their donor base. “We want to give people the chance to be apart of what we do,” said Stringham. “You don’t have to be rich. Any amount will help.”

All the money raised will help make repairs and contribute to the general upkeep of the Camp Viola campus, plus pay for lifeguards during the summer. For more information or to make a donation, visit