“This is incredible,” said Boothbay Charities Classic co-chairmen Brenda Blackman and Tony Krason.
The duo was referring to the great turnout of participants in BCC’s second annual Boothbay Cornhole Classic on Saturday, Sept. 17.
“Last year we had 22 teams and this year, 70 teams competed,” said Blackman.
When all was said and done – with the tournament registrations, sponsorships, auctions silent and live, raffle drawings, food and beverage concessions – Blackman announced at 4 p.m. Saturday that just over $50,000 was raised for Special Olympics Maine – the charity the BCC has supported since 1990.
“Last year we were able to raise $15,000 for SOME, with our first try at holding a cornhole tournament, but this year we were pleasantly surprised at the amount we’ll be able to give,” said Blackman.
The seven-plus-hour tournament was conducted by Wicked Cornhole of Tewksbury, Massachusetts and owners Bruce and Stacey Taylor were integral parts of the success. They kept track of the winners and losers throughout, with updates announced via a PA system and running standings on an electronic scoreboard. During lulls in the announcements, music played over the PA system.
“This is such a giving crowd,” said Bruce Taylor, who also conducted the raffle drawings, live auction, and silent auction winners. The live auction items went for big money, more than the starting minimum bid. The items included two Boston Bruin tickets, a two-night stay at Sugarloaf, lighthouse tour, Brunswick hotel and dinner package, a 20-passenger boat trip aboard the Nellie G., a two-night stay on Ram Island, a two-night stay at Cliff House Resort in Ogunquit, VIP seating for eight at Tugboat Inn, and a two-hour cruise on the Grand Banks classic, Slowpoke, around Boothbay Harbor.
As competitors lofted the bean bags onto the cornhole boards with the major sponsors’ logos emblazoned on them, others not competing enjoyed the grilled food and adult beverages and soft drinks manned by committee members and volunteers. Bartenders Craig Andrews and Alyssa Allen donated their tips ($420) to the total raised for SOME – $50,420.
Cash payouts for the Classic winners were $500 for first place, $350 for second place and $150 for third place. The round robin format saw the 0-4 and 1-3 teams being eliminated, while the 2-2, 3-1 and 4-0 teams moved on to the finals in a single-elimination round.
The BCC committee is scheduling the third annual Boothbay Cornhole Classic for Sept. 16, 2023.
“We might have to hold a two-day tournament if this grows in popularity,” said Krason.