The 2017 Tee-Off For Tootsie Tournament is slated for Skyline Golf Course

One of the most anticipated golf tournaments of the season is set for Saturday with the Ninth Annual Tee-Off for Tootsie Tournament at Skyline Golf Course.

A field of 36 foursomes will join many others for a fun-filled day packed with food, prizes and refreshments.

While the golf field is filled and has had a waiting list over the years, others can join in the fun and partake in all day food and refreshments for $25.

The tournament, honoring the late Michele "Tootsie" Cerra, will take on added significance this year. Sarah Robinson DeRichie a long-time driving force on the committee, passed away recently and will also be in everyone's thoughts.

"Sarah was the heart and soul of the committee so, this will be an emotional tournament for all of us," said committee member, Renee Bianco.

Despite heavy hearts, the committee and participants will focus on enjoying the day as Michele and Sarah would want them to do.

"It will be a bittersweet celebration," offered Bianco.

History

The tournament got its start when a group of friends got together and wanted to honor Michele.

“We wanted to memorialize Michele's life,” said Bianco. “She was such a wonderful person who was community-minded so we wanted to honor her and at the same-time give back to the community.”

Over the years, the tournament has raised approximately $40,000 for various causes.

That first tournament was especially challenging for the committee.

"We were never involved with organizing such an event," noted Bianco.

"We weren't sure how much interest there would be. Then, the week before the event, we had to move the tournament to another course since the original site had double booked tournaments for that day."

Skyline

The committee approached the owners at Skyline Golf Course at the last minute and the tournament found a home.

"They were so gracious to us and have been through the years," said Bianco.

The tournament, which is spearheaded by a committee that features Laurel Marco, Caroline Newcomb, Tara Peregrin, Jamie DePalma, Andrea Gallo, Jim Andidora, Mike DeRichie and Mr. and Mrs. Michael Cerra (Michele's parents) to name a few, will have a full day Saturday.

"There are so many other people who help make this a reality," offered Bianco.

The committee and others will start their day hours before the 10 a.m. registration and will put in a 12-14 hour day.

Grills and coolers have to be strategically placed throughout the course.

Prizes placed on display.

Food, beverages and all supplies put in place.

Going Strong

Nine years ago, a group decided to memorialize a friend by starting a golf tournament.

Tomorrow, when each golfer addresses their ball for the first time, they can take a moment and reflect upon the two lives that brought them to a day of fun and friendship.

This event, one of the most well-attended tournaments of the summer, will tee-off for Tootsie and another loved friend, Sarah.