Shamrock Invitational Fund
In 1977, the Michael Sweeney Memorial Golf Tournament began for the benefit of the American Heart Association in Mecosta County. After several years, it was renamed the Shamrock Invitational Golf Outing, which honored Michael Sweeney’s Irish heritage. During its long tradition, the seven person board of the charitable event started an endowment fund with Mecosta County Community Foundation. This was done to assure their longstanding cycle of giving back to the community and providing scholarships for high school seniors from Big Rapids, Chippewa Hills, Crossroads Charter Academy, Lakeview, and Morley Stanwood.
In 2016, the Shamrock Invitational board wanted to branch out into Isabella County and created a similar endowment fund at the Mt. Pleasant Area Community Foundation. Board members of the Shamrock Invitational thought that Isabella County was the most fitting place to further their connections for a multitude of reasons. Brian Rush, another board member, also serves on the Community Foundation’s Board of trustees. He introduced the idea of starting an endowment fund for Isabella County to Mr. White and Mr. Tacia.
While guests do have to be invited, Mr. Tacia said participants tend to be age 45 or younger, and have a passion for charitable giving. Board members Kyle White and Tom Tacia said the plan to have the Invitational in Mecosta County one year, Isabella County the next, and repeating from then on. Bucks Run will serve as the venue for the 42nd annual Shamrock Invitational on July 17, 2019.