Play in the Greater Cleveland YMCA Golf Classic at Firestone South July 14th

Firestone Country Club
Firestone South 18th hole
The South Course at Firestone will host the inaugural Greater Cleveland YMCA Golf Classic

Firestone Country ClubPlaying 18 holes on the famed Firestone Country Club South Course — while walking in the footsteps of legends — should be on every avid golfer’s bucket list.

The challenging South Course is home to the World Golf Championship Bridgestone Invitational that has attracted such golf stars as Rory McIlroy, Adam Scott, Ricky Fowler, Tiger Woods and Jordan Spieth.

Greater Cleveland YMCAOn Thursday, July 14, 2016, the YMCA of Greater Cleveland will hold the inaugural Greater Cleveland YMCA Golf Cup Classic at Firestone Country Club’s famed South Course at 452 E. Warner Road, Akron, Ohio.

“Semi-pro and recreational golfers can join the YMCA of Greater Cleveland and be a pro for a day and have the chance to golf on the south course,” said Joe Cerny, the Greater Cleveland YMCA’s interim chief executive officer. “They will be following in the footsteps of professional golfing heroes participating in the Bridgestone Invitational held this month at the world-renowned Firestone Country Club.”

The one-day charity golfing event will include a barbecue luncheon and silent auction, snacks and beverages on the course, as well as an upscale hors d’oeuvres reception and awards ceremony in the clubhouse. All proceeds from the annual event will help to further and promote the YMCA cause.

Sponsorships and prizes valued nearly $80,000 already have been committed to the Greater Cleveland YMCA’s inaugural Golf Cup Classic.

Green fees for the charity event are $500 per golfer or $2,000 per foursome. The fee includes an embroidered Nike golf polo shirt, golf hat, swag bag, golf-cart reservation, luncheon, snacks and beverages on the course, and the clubhouse reception with open bar and hors d’oeuvres. A golf clinic is also available by reservation.

This one-of-a-kind golfing event is scheduled to coincide with the arrival of delegates and committee members for the 2016 Republican National Convention (RNC), which will be held on July 18 through July 22, 2016 at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland. Golfers seeking transportation to the charity event from downtown can have round-trip luxury accommodations for just $60.


Please Join With Our Event Sponsors

The Alpha Group InsuranceThe Alpha Group, a major Cleveland-based insurance agency specializing in employee benefits, has partnered with the YMCA as the $20,000 Presenting Sponsor for the event,” said Cerny.

Other key sponsors of the Greater Cleveland YMCA’a Golf Cup Classic are:

Precor®, a Woodinville, WA-based, home and commercial fitness equipment manufacturer, is the premier Platinum $10,000 sponsor for the charity event.

The Wave 107.3, a Cleveland-based FM-radio station, is the $6,500 sponsor for the VIP reception featuring hors d’oeuvres and open bar for the golf event. The Wave 107.3, owned by Rubber City Radio Group, specializes in broadcasting “Smooth Jazz” music.

Tesla Motors. The automobile maker is offering golfers test drives and a $1,500 chance to win use of a car for the weekend. Tesla’s award winning Model S, now with Autopilot features, is an evolution in automobile engineering.

The 100-percent electric motor propels drivers from 0 to 60 mph in as little as 2.8 seconds, without hesitation and without a drop of gasoline. With the highest safety rating in America and up to 270 miles range, Model S redefines performance driving.

Other secured sponsors include: MCPc Family Charities, Monster Drinks, Advance Ohio, Quicken Loans Arena, the LBJ Foundation and IHeart Radio.

To reserve a sponsorship or playing spot, please call Trevalyn L. Bell at 1-216-263-6818, or via email at

Firestone CC Clubhouse

Sports Celebrities at the Event

Josh Cribbs, a 10-year National Football League veteran, three-time Pro Bowl wide receiver and kick returner, is one of several professional athletes expected to play golf at the YMCA event. Cribbs played eight seasons with the Cleveland Browns before finishing his playing career with the Indianapolis Colts.

Josh has followed up his dynamic NFL career with an amazing off-the-field persona. Josh mentors young athletes through his “Cribbs Elite” Football camps, and frequently takes part in various public speaking engagements.

“Cribbs gives back to numerous charities and stays connected to his community,” Cerny said. “Josh is honored to have been asked to deliver the keynote address at this year’s YMCA annual meeting.”

Mick Yelovich, a long-drive professional golfing specialist, has participated in more than 250 events throughout the U.S. and has generated more than $1 million in charitable contributions.

Yelovich, who uses a Krank Formula 6 driver with a Forged Prototype 3X shaft house, is credited with a drive of 475 yards at the Soderby Long Drive Classic in Uppsala, Sweden, and in a non-competitive longest-drive event drove a ball 498 yards at the par five 9th hole at Railside Golf Course in Gibson City, IL.

Sponsored by Charity Golf International, Yelovich will be hitting drives on the par 5th hole at Firestone’s South Course.

The company also is sponsoring a $1,000 hole-in-one chance at the YMCA golf event. Since 2012, Charity Golf International has raised more than $11 million on its tee box at more than 2,500 charity golf events.

Any group that makes a donation at the YMCA event and holes out Yelovich’s tee shot from the fairway wins a three-day, $5,000 golf trip of a lifetime for two at the Pebble Beach Resort near Monterey, CA. Proceeds raised on the 5th hole at Firestone will be split 50/50 with the YMCA and the charity golf organization.


Win a Ford F-150 Truck

Hole-In-One prizes at the charity event include: a 2016 Ford F-150 truck valued at more than $27,700 from Fairlawn-based Montrose Ford, and choice of a Tag Heuer, a Cartier or a Rolex watch valued at up to $6,000 from Alson Fine Jewelers in Cleveland.

“Local and national businesses still have time to take advantage of the remaining Greater Cleveland YMCA’s Golf Cup Classic sponsorship and contributor opportunities ranging from $2,500 to $6,500,” said Cerny.

To reserve a sponsorship, please call Trevalyn L. Bell at 1-216-263-6818, or via email at To buy tickets go to

The proceeds of the charity event will go to support the Greater Cleveland YMCA. Established in 1854, organization has since evolved into a premiere community based charitable organization with three areas of focus: Youth Development, Healthy Living, and Social Responsibility.

“Our mission is to put Christian principles into practice that build healthy spirit, mind and body for all,” said Cerny. The Greater Cleveland YMCA is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, and a portion of the charity-event donation will be tax-deductible.


Firestone 4th hole
The fourth hole at Firestone Country Club’s South Course.

A Chance to Play ‘The Monster’

Firestone Country Club has welcomed many of golf’s greatest players and the South Course has been host to the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational since 2006.

Tiger Woods will forever be linked as one of the best that ever played on Firestone’s South Course. He has won eight of his 79 PGA Tour trophies at Firestone Country Club.

Jordan Spieth is another who was named player of the year in the 2014-2015 PGA Tour season. The 22-year-old is the reigning U.S. Open and Masters champion.

Spieth is the youngest PGA Tour Player of the Year since Tiger Woods in 1997. He is the third golfer to earn both PGA Tour Rookie of the Year and Player of the Year Honors.

Golfers at the YMCA Greater Cleveland Golf Cup Classic July 14th will have the opportunity to see and feel what the top PGA professional golfers experience at the world famous Firestone Country Club.

Firestone Country Club offers three challenging courses of substantial length and difficulty. They are the North, West and South courses respectively.

Firestone South Course Map

Famed South Course

“This is an incredible opportunity to play 18 holes of championship golf at the exclusive PGA-sanctioned Firestone Country Club,” said Cerny. “The South Course’s 16th hole is respectfully known as The Monster. The yardage length of the hole is well above average.”

This long, tree-lined brute has an illustrious tournament history, including the 1975 PGA Championship. Since becoming an annual World Golf Championships host, the layout has been a favorite course of Tiger Woods, who won seven times here.

The 18-hole South Course at the Firestone Country Club facility features 7,400 yards of golf from the longest tees. Par is 70 strokes. The course rating is 75.1 and it has a slope rating of 128 on Bent grass.

Designed by Bertie Way/Robert Trent Jones, ASGCA; Jack Nicklaus, ASGCA; and Craig Schreiner, ASGCA, the South Course opened in 1929. ClubCorp USA, Inc. manages this facility, with Steven Carter as the General Manager.

Established in 1929 by Harvey Firestone and later acquired by ClubCorp in 1981, Firestone Country Club remains a one-of-a-kind golf facility.

The words “Firestone South” can conjure up fond memories for many golf fans. Few will forget Jack Nicklaus’s magnificent comeback in the 1975 PGA Championship. Down by five strokes to Bruce Crampton, Nicklaus made an unbelievable par on “The Monster” 16th hole. He continued his comeback to win by four strokes, collecting his fourth PGA Championship.

Noted for its length, the par-70, 7,400-yard South Course includes a series of intimidating, long par-4 holes and one of the longest par-5 holes anywhere. The 16th hole plays to 667 yards. A pond at the approach to the green captures its share of errant shots.

Players, however, have a birdie opportunity on the only other par-5, the 497-yard 2nd hole. The 18th hole, though, is all the par-4 anyone would ever want to play. At 464 yards, it is long, narrow and has a green defended by bunkers.

It’s not a place to expect to make a birdie to win. The 16th hole doesn’t have the market covered on length. Before you even get there, the par-3, 221-yard, 15th hole provides enough of a challenge. The flat green makes for a straight putt, but getting the ball close to the hole can be a problem. From the tee, bunkers on the left of the green are hidden and provide for unpleasant surprises.

If a 221-yard par-3 isn’t enough, try the 200-yard 5th hole.

The small green can be reached with a 5-iron or 6-iron but you might need as much as a 3-iron when the wind is blowing. Strange as it may seem, it is not one of the toughest scoring holes.

That honor goes to two of the par-4s. The 6th hole is 469 yards of heartburn. It has ranked as the second and first toughest challenge for professionals at Firestone over the years. When Robert Trent Jones redesigned Firestone in 1959, this hole made par an excellent score.

The 471-yard 4th hole is another test. All the hole asks a player to do is hit a long and straight tee shot followed by an approach shot that must come in high to hold the elevated green.

Sometimes easier said than done, but then again, that’s the best way to sum up Firestone Country Club’s South Course.


YMCA of Greater Cleveland

Greater Cleveland YMCAThe YMCA of Greater Cleveland relies on individual, corporate and foundation support to continuously deliver the programs and services it has been chartered to fulfill.

The success of special events, like the first annual Greater Cleveland YMCA Golf Cup Classic, is directly attributed to the generosity of event sponsors.

To reserve a sponsorship or playing spot, please call Trevalyn L. Bell at 1-216-263-6818, or via email at


Written by Aimee DeBat as a Special Section for Northeast Ohio Golf.

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