For those who don't know, the Celebrity Pro-Am is a charitable event in which a PGA Tour Professional is paired with 3 other people. These people can be celebrities, dignitaries, and just other local people of interest. Of course, I only go to meet the celebrities and PGA guys, and usually I am very successful.
Here are links to the other two times I have 'graphed this event:
This year, I'll start by talking about how I met each celebrity and what they were like.
George Lopez was my big target for the day. I knew his signing habits were very good, so I wasn't too worried about missing out on him although there were a lot of people.
I first met him when he was coming up from the practice facility. He was rushing because he had to tee off and kept saying,"Last one, last one." but he kept signing and did two 8x10s for me:
Later in the day, I still had photos for him so I went to the 8th green, and I was super happy with what transpired.
I called him over after he finished the hole, and I had 2 photos showing(with some more peeking out under them) on top of my book. He signed the first two, and without me even asking, grabbed the others and signed them for me. This was incredibly nice of him, and not something someone of his level of celebrity do very often, if at all.
The marker he had by this point was God awful, but luckily I was able to get him to use mine on the previous photos.
To top it off, he was more than happy to take a picture with me:
Bridget Moynahan, the star of Blue Bloods on CBS, was another big target. Some may remember her from her role in Coyote Ugly as well.
She was actually hosting/playing in the charity mini golf tournament that takes place the same day as the Celebrity Pro-Am. When she arrived, she had a cart bring her right up to the mini golf course so I wasn't expecting the best. She had a brace on her ankle, so I'm guessing that was the reasoning for her being driven directly up. Other people were reassuring me that she would sign at the end, because that's what she did last year.
They were right, and at the end she signed away:
She was very sweet to the fans, and thanked us for coming out. She even commented on how much she liked the photo I chose.
Stephen Gostkowski of the New England Patriots was another name I was excited to see on the list because he is one of the Patriots that I haven't met yet. He was VERY nice. I told him I loved the photo of him making the tackle and he laughed and said," Me too, but my knees still hurt from doing that." He was half kidding...
Tim Wakefield needs no introduction, and while I had met him before, I am always excited to see him because I grew up watching him. He signed 2 photos for me(I had to dip him) but he was very nice.
He had his own(blue) sharpie to my surprise. Usually no famous person voluntarily carries a blue with them.
The Connecticut legend Jim Calhoun signed up a storm at the event, and I caught him coming down from the clubhouse. I've never had a bad experience with him!
It was a bit of a surprise to see that NASCAR phenom Bubba Wallace Jr. would be attending this event, but as a fan of his, I was pretty happy. I saw him multiple times throughout the day, and he was always very nice as most NASCAR drivers are.
Skateboarding legend, Ryan Sheckler was also there, and he was truly one of the nicest people in attendance. His handler kept trying to drag him away from signing, and he just kept going and going. He wouldn't stop, and his handler was getting visibly frustrated. It's always so funny when power hungry people try to ruin the fun, but Ryan hooked everyone up!
Season 1 winner of NBC's ,"The Voice", Javier Colon was there as always. I've gotten a bunch of things signed by him over the years, so I just went with one photo this time.
Coach/ Hall of Famer Geno Auriemma is always a great signer, and I was able to get him to sign 3 of the AWESOME new Womens' Championship Sports Illustrateds.
Overall, I had a great day 'graphing the celebrities who attended and now I will talk about the golfers.
Two-time Masters Champion, Bubba Watson, is always one of the top golfers at this event. He usually signs a lot coming off of his last hole, and that was true again this year:
I was able to meet another two-time major champion, Ernie Els, for the first time around the practice area. He probably has the worst autograph of any golfer out there, but it was still cool to meet him.
Another first-timer for me was former Masters Champion, Angel Cabrera. Angel is a STRICT one-per and glares into your soul like a dementor straight out of Harry Potter to make sure that he doesn't sign for you again.
I got the rest of the golfers that I had either met a number of times before or that I didn't care as much about on pairing sheet books.
Luke Donald & Stuart Appleby:
Jason Gore, Kevin Na, & One Unknown:
I'm really happy with how this year's tournament worked out for me, and I'm already looking forward to next year.