Traveling in style at the 2017 Muskie Pride Golf Outing

When people think of class gifts, signs, trees, decorative plaques, and similar school furnishings or landscaping come to mind. But for the Muscatine High School class of 1981, their true gift was not the item they gave their school, it was the Muskie Pride Golf Outing.
Co-organizer of the event Mike Morgan recalled, “we had a class reunion. . . so we just decided one day, ‘hey let’s go golfing tomorrow,’ and we got together and we decided to throw a few dollars in and have some pin prizes and money for the end of the outing, and that was so much fun we decided to do it the next year and the next year.” Over the course of several years, the event continued to grow, with players ending up with about $500 in the kitty. “That was way more money than we wanted to be distributing. We wanted to have fun, we wanted to golf, so we decided what we would do was to have the winning group choose what Muscatine charity that money would go to,” explained Morgan. That decision brought the Muskie Pride Golf Outing to life.
Once the outing became a fundraiser, some of the golfers decided to match the donations they received to make the events’ donation to charity even larger. In its first year, the Muskie Pride Golf Outing raised $1,500 for Muscatine’s Special Olympics team. As the number of players and the amount of donations continued to grow, the outing’s organizers made another change to their donation system to help spread the wealth around even more. They decided that the winning team could choose where three quarters of the money went, but that a drawing would select one lucky winner to decide where the final quarter of the money went. The choice proved popular. Last year, the Muskie Pride Golf Outing had eighty-two participants, and raised $2,500 to split between Muscatine Community School District’s (MCSD’s) special education programs and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Muscatine.
Unlike many golf fundraisers, participants do not need to raise a set amount of money. “It’s all free will offering,” said Morgan. “We literally take a jar and put it on a table. If you want to put money in it, great. If you don’t want to put money in it, that’s okay too.” This unique feature of the tournament truly highlights the generosity of Muscatine’s residents. Without any donation guidelines at all, the Muskie Pride Golf Outing collects over a thousand dollars each year to invest in the community.
As the Class of ‘81 gears up for this year’s Muskie Pride Golf Outing, interested golfers age twenty one and older still have time to RSVP ahead of the Sunday, September 2nd outing by emailing Morgan at [email protected]. While each golfer must pay for their own game, cart, food and drinks, Morgan would like to provide a head count to the course ahead of the event. The game officially tees off at 9:00 am, but Morgan recommends all players arrive by 8:00 am. Come out and share your stories, golfing prowess, and donations to support Muscatine’s charities.