The County Open was created in 1990 when a group of golfers got together and decided to organize a golf tournament that would benefit both southern Aroostook golf courses; Houlton Community Golf Club in New Limerick and Va Jo Wa in Island Falls.

They decided that the profits from this event would be donated to the Houlton Regional Health Services Foundation. For the non-golfers a gala dinner and cash raffle was also included in the festivities. There were over 120 golfers and about 240 gala participants the first year. The committee decided that the events were so successful that they would try it again the next year and here we are 25 years later!

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The committee members and events may have changed over the years, but one thing had remained consistent, giving back to our community. In the past 24 years, $522,000 has been raised for the Health Services Foundation.

This year’s events include: an 18 hole golf tournament on Saturday, August 9th at the Houlton Community Golf Course. Tee times will be posted on the website, www.countyopen.com  and at the courses on Thursday. There will be a 4-person golf scramble at Va Jo Wa on Sunday, August 10th. Registration for this event begins at 9:00, with a shot-gun start at 10:00 am. The cost for each golf event is $50 and includes a practice round. Pre-registration is strongly encouraged so that tee times can be assigned.

There will be a 5K event this year. Due to unfortunate circumstances, the half marathon that we have held in the past was changed to a 5K family fun run this year. Participants can also choose to enter as a walker.  The first 75 runners and walkers to register will receive a free t-shirt to commemorate the event. The cost was originally set at $20 for the event, but if someone is interested in participating and mentions this article, the registration cost will be reduced to $15! The 5K will start at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, with registration beginning at 7:30. Participants will begin at the flag pole on hole #1 at the Houlton Community Golf Club, run out Drews Lake Road about 1.5 miles, turn and reverse the course back to finish at the clubhouse. Refreshments will be provided courtesy of Coca-Cola, Paradis Shop N Save and Houlton Farms Dairy.

The Gala Dinner will be held this year at the Horn Restaurant’s event center on Saturday, August 9th. Cocktail hour  begins at 6:00, with a prime rib & lobster dinner at 7:00. Paul LaPointe will be providing the musical entertainment this year! We are bringing back the Reverse Cash Raffle with a grand prize of $2,500! This event is open to anyone who would like to make a dinner reservation or purchase a raffle ticket. The cost of the dinner is $50 per person and the raffle tickets are $75 each. You do not need to be present to win!

If you would like more information or want to participate in any of these wonderful events, please contact the Chairman Jackie White at 521-2150 or visit our website at www.countyopen.com.