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Val Vermulm of Billman’s Home Decor is donating two silent auction baskets to the upcoming 19th Hole fundraiser for the Cut Bank golf course. The course, which is located on the Blackfeet Reservation, is subject to the Tribe’s COVID-19 closure ordinance, which has had a devastating financial impact on the course.

The Cut Bank Golf and Country Club is hosting a 19th Hole family-friendly fundraiser on Sunday, Aug. 30, from 2-8 p.m. at the Cut Bank Creek Brewery. The local golf course, which includes a restaurant, has been closed to the public under the Blackfeet Tribe’s COVID-19 closure ordinance, which was extended indefinitely last week. Tickets are $20 per person and are available at the door.

“You definitely don’t need to be a member or even a golfer to come out and enjoy the event and support our cause,” said Jeff Billman, President of the course’s board of directors. All proceeds will go to help fund the operations of the golf course.

The event will kick-off at 2 p.m. with the talented Shelby music duo, Wheelhouse, playing from 3-6 p.m. Brisket and homemade mac ‘n’ cheese will be served starting at 4 p.m. Organizers have also planned some fun golf-themed games for everyone to enjoy throughout the afternoon. Finally, there will be a silent auction set up, with bidders having the chance to bid until 6 p.m. Anyone wishing to donate silent auction items should contact Jeff Billman or Val Vermulm. 

The board of directors of the Cut Bank Golf and Country Club has had a challenging summer. The board has been busy “applying for every bit of financial assistance we can find,” said Billman. “We were awarded $9,110.00 under the Payroll Protection Loan program, which was a huge help in enabling us to pay our grounds crew to keep the course up.” Billman said the board had cut their crew to part-time to keep our payroll expenses to an absolute minimum. 

“Recently we received another COVID grant for $10,000 from the State of Montana. That money is all that is currently keeping us afloat,” he stated.

Board members are in the process of holding a membership drive raffle. “Everyone who pays their 2021 season membership before Sept. 30 will be entered into a drawing to win a three-year single membership,” said Billman. 

“Most people don’t realize the golf course’s fixed costs have not changed despite being closed all summer,” explained Billman. “We still have to keep the course up. Our utilities, taxes, insurance and equipment costs all stayed the same with virtually no revenue coming in to offset those expenses.”

Thanks to the hard work of Billman and other board members, the Cut Bank Golf and Country Club is in a position to have a profitable season in terms of growth in membership and revenue. 

“Our board did a great job of lining up events and tournaments to make sure the course would be successful this summer,” said Billman. “We were even looking into having a second men’s league, which would have been a big financial boost. The few weekends we were allowed to be open, the course was packed and we had a waiting list for rental carts. So it’s extremely disheartening to be in this financial position to end the season.”

He concluded, “At this point, we are just doing everything we can to make sure the course and clubhouse are able to open for the 2021 season.” 

The Cut Bank Golf & Country Club is a qualified 501(c) 3 public charity non-profit under the IRS so all donations are tax deductible. Donation letters are provided to donors for their tax records. 

 If you have any questions on how to make tax deductible donations to the course, please contact Val Vermulm at 873-5263.

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