Wiegand Golf Classic a hit for Wehrlen House

| 31 Jul 2012 | 02:02

OAK RIDGE — The Department for Persons with Disabilities (DPD) 38th annual Wiegand Farm Golf Classic, sponsored by Lakeland Bank, was held on June 25, 2012 at the Bowling Green Golf Club in Oak Ridge. A sold-out crowd of 144 golfers attended the outing to show the support for DPD.

The Department for Persons with Disabilities provides residential and vocational support for adults with developmental disabilities and their families. The DPD operates nine group homes, two supervised apartments and a vocational day program throughout Morris, Passaic and Sussex County. The Wehrlen House in West Milford is one of the DPD’s residential facilities and is home to five developmentally disabled adults.

“The 2012 Wiegand Farm Golf Classic was one of our best ever," said DPD Development Director Christopher Brancato. "We sold out the event and were blessed to have over 100 donors and sponsors. We can’t thank everyone who participated enough for all of their support and kindness.”

The day started out with clouds and thunderstorms, but by 10 a.m. the sun came out. The golfers teed off soon after. The team of Ennis, Ford, De Ryder and Coleman took down the best team score of 9 under par. The highlight to many of the participant’s day was the “Win-A-Watch” hole where golfers took a shot at the green to win a watch from Alexander House resident Anthony Iovine. Iovine has lived at the DPD for over 20 years and has become a staple at the golf classic.

“The day is a lot of fun. I gave out a lot of watches and even got to take a few shots myself,” Iovine said.

Bruce DeMolli, DPD board member and New Jersey state treasurer for the Knights of Columbus, presented Mike Vaclavicek and Tom Straten with the Knights of the Year Award for their work with the Disability Drives. Rich and Carmela Douris were given the Dominick Calabrese Humanitarian of the Year Award. They have been longtime supporters of the DPD and have devoted their lives to helping children in need.

“I would like to congratulate the honorees, Mike Vaclavicek, Tom Straten and Rich and Carmela Douris for their many years of dedicated service to the DPD and their community. Their leadership and contributions have had a significant impact of the lives of individuals and families throughout our state,” wrote Governor Chris Christie in a letter to the participants.

“We would like to thank all of our sponsors and donors, especially our event sponsor Lakeland Bank and platinum sponsors Joseph A. Natoli Construction and Arthur J. Gallagher and Co.," said DPD Executive Director Scott Milliken. "The event would not have been possible without our dedicated Wiegand Farm Golf Committee, especially chairman Jack Kelly who has been a part of all 38 of our golf classics! We would also like to thank all of our volunteers, especially Billy from Basile Apartments and Anthony from Alexander House, who reminded us all what the Wiegand Farm Golf Classic is all about.”

Anyone interested in golfing in the 2013 Wiegand Farm Golf Classic or being a sponsor, contact Brancato at 973-406-1104 or at Chrisb@DPD.org.

“There are not many golf outings, or fundraisers for that matter, than have been in existence for nearly four decades. We are proud that the Wiegand Farm Golf Classic is one of them and are blessed to have support from our local communities, corporations and friends. The 2012 Wiegand Farm Golf Classic really hit a 'hole-in-one' for the Department for Persons with Disabilities,” Milliken added.