EAST ORANGE, NJ - Though the start of the 58th Annual Men of Essex Golf Classic was delayed a few days, it appears the rain and inclement weather conditions could not damper the spirit of this joyous occasion. Even with the disruption caused by the change of date from Monday until Thursday August 16th, by all accounts, this year’s event was still a huge success.
Dozens of supporters donned in golf apparel participated on the course in support of this prestigious charity. However, the highlight of the evening was a tribute to Jazz broadcaster Rhonda Hamilton. Rhonda is an avid golfer as well as mid-day host on the flagship jazz station WBGO -- Jazz Radio 88.3 FM.
She was selected as an honored guest in recognition to her award-winning career achievements and contributions to the growth and development of America’s Classic Music (Jazz). Hamilton has achieved widespread acclaim as an award-winning on-air host since WBGO began broadcasting in 1979.
Proceeds from the Golf Classic benefit the Men of Essex Student Aid Fund, which assists Essex County students achieve their higher education aspirations. The tournament is one of the nation's longest running sports benefits hosted by an African - American charitable organization and has attracted the support of leading area corporations who have joined the Men of Essex as tournament co-sponsors. Corporate co-sponsors for this year's tournament included: PNC Bank (East Brunswick, NJ), RWJ Barnabas Health System; RWJ/Barnabas Newark Beth Israel Medical Center & Children’s Hospital (Newark and Livingston, NJ) PSE&G (Newark, NJ), East Orange General Hospital, (East Orange, NJ), Investors Bank (Short Hills, NJ), Suez Water Resource Management, (Cranford, NJ), Open Road BMW (Edison, NJ); The Forman Foundation (Pennsauken, NJ), The Shauger Group, (East Orange, NJ), Peerless Beverage Company, (Union, NJ), AFLAC and WBGO-FM.
Men of Essex has been raising funds to help defray the cost of college for Essex County high school students for the last 60 years. The Golf Classic has been the organization’s hallmark fund raiser for 58 of those years.