Martin C. Barry
The first annual APGA Tour golf tournament, held at the Atlantide Golf Club in Île Perrôt on June 9, raised more than $23,000 for the Hellenic Chronic Care Hospital Foundation.
Nick Liounis, vice-president of the Hellenic Chronic Care Hospital Foundation, said the foundation “could never foresee raising so much money at one event and we are truly, truly grateful for this.”
Almost Professional Golf
As cause supporter Peter Vamianakis explained to more than 60 people who spent the day on the course then sat down to a sumptuous meal that evening in the restaurant/clubhouse, APGA stands for Almost Professional Golf Association.
“We started the APGA in 2000, which was a very long time ago, but we’re not going to go into all that,” he said. “The APGA is a bunch of retired and semi-retired gentlemen who get together every Monday to play golf in a very competitive golf league.”
Having fun with the PGA
According to Vamianakis, the APGA mimics the PGA, which is the Professional Golf Association, in every way, copying their events, even their point system. But, more importantly, the APGA “takes photos of their winners with their trophies and PhotoShop our heads on them,” he added. “And we have a creative genius who does that. So we have a lot of fun with it.”
While noting that the APGA “is not real – it’s fantasy,” Vamianakis said the evening’s fundraiser “is reality bringing all you people together at this event. And at the end of the night to be able to present a nice big cheque to the Hellenic Chronic Care Hospital Foundation is something we can all be very proud of.”
Vlogiannitis on golf
Tournament director Terry Vlogiannitis, who is also the APGA Tour’s statistician and treasurer, joked that there was once a time, in his younger years playing baseball, when he didn’t consider golf to be a real sport.
When Vlogiannitis was invited out one day around four years ago by an APGA supporter to play golf with a few other guys, he discovered it was harder than he had imagined. “As a matter of fact, most of my divots were going further than the balls,” said Vlogiannitis, drawing some laughs from the golf-savvy crowd.
But then, he continued, somehow when he was close to calling it a day, one of his shots hit the sweet spot down the middle. “And believe me when I say this, I was hooked big time, and I’m not ashamed to say right now I’m addicted to the sport. It is absolutely phenomenal.”
Remembering with golf
Tournament co-founder Bill Kampouris said: “The purpose of the memorial tournament is to remember friends, teammates and loved ones that are not with us today, but we’re missing them so much. It gives us an opportunity to remember the good moments we had with them. And of course gives us an opportunity to remember and share all these beautiful golf stories that we all can tell so well and always with a little jest.
“Most importantly, it gives us an opportunity to give back to our community by donating all proceeds to philanthropic organizations,” he added. “I thank you all for being here today. I thank the organizing committee, the volunteers who made this event possible.”