Golf Classic returns to Snowmass Club, aims to drive funds to Challenge Aspen

Anna Meyer
The Aspen Times

Challenge Aspen will host its annual Golf Classic fundraiser at the Snowmass Club on Monday.

The fundraiser will support the nonprofit organization’s scholarship fund and will include a variety of food and beverage pairings, according to Challenge Aspen’s website. Organizers expect 100 participants in the Golf Classic.

The event will begin with breakfast and registration at 7:45 a.m., followed by a shotgun start at 9 a.m. and concluding with a 19th hole reception at 1:30 p.m. Tickets are $250 for individuals or $1,000 for a group of four.

The winners of the “closest to the pin” and “long drive” competitions get a trip to Pebble Beach in California.

Challenge Aspen works to provide disabled individuals in the Roaring Fork Valley with access to adventures, arts and cultural experiences, according to Challenge Aspen CEO Lindsay Cagley. The nonprofit is most well known for giving adaptive ski and snowboard lessons during the winter; however, it operates year-round.

“Our activities are designed to boost confidence and self-esteem while broadening horizons for all ages,” Cagley said in an email.

The scholarship fund allows Challenge Aspen to avoid turning participants away due to financial reasons, according to Cagley. The organization provides nearly $300,000 in annual scholarships for people with disabilities to “participate in adventures that empower the discovery of new abilities.”

Part of the funding goes toward Challenge Aspen’s group program for veterans and active military personnel with service-related disabilities. The funding enables the organization’s healing retreats to be made accessible to everyone who wishes to attend by covering travel expenses and meals, according to Cagley.

This year, Challenge Aspen has invited a group of veterans with service-related disabilities participating in a Challenge Aspen Military Opportunities (CAMO) healing retreat to play in the tournament.

“We are thrilled to host these brave men and women, offering adaptive golf and participation opportunities alongside our community of donors and disability advocates,” Cagley said.

Challenge Aspen upcoming plans include partnering with local businesses and municipalities and Aspen Institute’s Project Play to “address accessibility and disability awareness in the Roaring Fork Valley,” according to Cagley. It will also host a new vertical challenge in the winter, taking place in Snowmass. 

In addition, staff members and volunteers have been getting training in adaptive archery in order to expand access to the sport in the near future.

Anna Meyer is an editorial intern at The Aspen Times this summer. She will be a sophomore at Vassar College in the fall.