Read the Latest Articles
  • Northeast Wisconsin
  • June 2017
Written by 

25th Annual Golf Outing — Where has the time gone?

Karla Wolfinger looked back recently, wondering where 25 years have gone. The Larry Wolfinger Charity Golf Outing she started planning immediately after her husband’s funeral in 1992 has grown beyond anything she imagined.

The 25th annual event Friday, July 28 and Saturday, July 29 at Countryside Golf Course in Kaukauna promises to be a little different from very early versions. Established to raise money for those struggling with medical expenses, the event eventually couldn’t handle the volume of applications and birthed a nonprofit to carry on the work.

Community Benefit Tree, Inc. (CBT), was started in 2004 by Wolfinger and her daughter, Heidi Frederickson, currently the executive director. CBT has helped more than 500 families.

The Larry Wolfinger Charity Golf Outing continues to be a big part of the nonprofit’s fundraising. Special touches have been added to celebrate the outing’s 25th anniversary.

“We’re bringing back some of the old games from 25 years ago,” Karla said. “We’re lucky to have so many volunteers. Some of them have been with us every year. They have a good time making sure the golfers enjoy themselves.

“Even more fulfilling is knowing where the money went and how many people we’ve helped through the years. That makes all the preparation time worthwhile. We started working on this year’s event early in April.”

There’s a lot more to this fundraiser than golf. Even non-golfers can enjoy the bake sale, food, raffles, entertainment, silent and live auctions, and a special balloon release. All activities are open to the public, and anyone can purchase an oversized golf ball sign for $50 to memorialize a loved one. For more information, call Community Benefit Tree at 920-422-1919.

Volunteers are enthusiastic about CBT and the golf outing. Jacob Strauss said, “I like this event because it is fun and because Community Benefit Tree does a lot to help the community and help families who really need financial support.”

Sharon Lettau, another longtime helper, said, “I volunteer for the golf outing because I love the good work that they do. I find it’s always fun and rewarding.”

Some of those who volunteer are giving back. “Community Benefit Tree is an amazing organization,” Bruce Strauss said. “They helped with my sister’s benefit and we raised over $30,000 thanks to them. The way they give back to the community, how they help people in need and the families of those in need is just amazing. That’s why I help Community Benefit Tree and will continue helping them.”

As always, the golf outing will include a costume contest on both days. Golfers need to sign up quickly, because slots are limited. They can play 9 holes, Friday or Saturday, for $200 per team; or play 18 holes, 9 on Friday and 9 on Saturday, for just $350 per team.

The fee includes golf, a T-shirt, golf cart, meal, treats, fun activities on the course and chances at winning door prizes. For exact T-shirt sizes, golfers must order before July 11. Full payment is required to reserve a tee time and be entered into the drawing.

Silent auction items, including gift baskets, will be on display in person Saturday and also online during the week leading up to the event. Bidding starts July 29, and winners need not be present to win. Raffle tickets will be sold during the event on both days.

Individuals or businesses interested in sponsoring a hole or providing a gift basket for the silent auction should call the CBT office or visit the company website at

Anyone struggling through a medical crisis is welcome to apply for financial and other assistance through a Celebration of Support, a one-day event celebrating the life of an individual, or a fund set up to take tax-deductible donations. Information is available on the website or by calling the Community Benefit Tree office. 


Kathi Bloy

The Community Benefit Tree Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization governed by Christian values. Our mission is to help individuals and families struggling with a medical crisis financially, emotionally, spiritually and with practical resources. We celebrate people’s lives and support by helping family, friends or co-workers plan a Celebration of Support event for their loved one. In the last 10 years, these one-day events have helped more than 500 families with funds for living and medical expenses. Community Benefit Tree also provides education, support, resources and financial assistance for families. For more information, visit or contact CBT staff at 920-422-1919.

Kathi Bloy is a freelance writer from Appleton.

Subscribe Today
Community Partners Directory
Find a Complimentary Copy
Community Calendar