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Brookside Charity Paddle Festival—Overflowing with Goodwill and Good Fun
Jim Ward & Pete Rubacky
March 18, 2015
Over $15,000 raised this year
On January 17th, 40 ladies and 96 men took over the paddle courts at six local clubs to participate in the 11th Annual Brookside Charity Paddle Festival. The Brookside Racquet and Swim Club was again the host club. This event has grown from a 16-team men's event in 2005 to one of largest single-day paddle events in New Jersey. Over the history of our Fun-Fest, a total of $153,800 has been raised for charity.
The Ladies semifinals had Lucia Drumgould and Carrie Rabuse playing Rachel Whiteman and Kiffy Jacaruso while Dianne Newman and Liz Nadon battled Dede O'Brian and Carolyn Cutler. When the dust settled Drumgould/Rabuse and Cutler/O'Brian played a hard-fought final, which was won by Cutler/O'Brian in a three-set thriller.
In Men's semifinal action, Anthony Cosimano/Brett Kraft defeated Steve Haller/Jeff Hipkins, 6-4, 7-5, and Mike Stulac/Ray Crosta beat Steve DeRose/Jamie Ferriero in a three-set affair. The final, which was watched by a 100+ spectators, saw Cosimano/Kraft take down Stulac/Crosta, 7-5, 6-3. Play was followed by more play, as the participants ate, drank, and danced well into the morning hours. We are not saying that a lot of beverages were consumed. However, many Uber drivers made a lot of cash that day!
Over the years, the primary beneficiaries of the funds raised from the Brookside Invitational have been Veterans’ families (over $90,000), Special Children’s organizations (over $30,000), and local food pantries (over $20,000). All of the money raised from the participants goes directly to charities due to generous underwriting grants from friends of the festival and the participating clubs.
We are always looking for new players and hope many of you will travel to Allendale, New Jersey, to participate in our next Fun-Fest, which will be played on January 16, 2016. We can promise you a lot of paddle with some awesome people, lots of food and drink as well as a great time! We can also assist with overnight accommodations on a limited basis. The Brookside Charity Paddle Festival Committee thanks all the players, contributors, and fans.