By Katrina E. Williams
The Kansas City Flying Disc Club (KCFDC) raised $11,500 for the Bishop Sullivan Center this year with its annual Ice Bowl fundraiser, held on January 28.
Over 400 people turned out for the event, held for the last time at Swope Park. The Swope Park disc golf course is located on the site of Kansas City’s future no-kill animal shelter.
The Ice Bowl has taken place annually for 33 years, with 32 of those in Kansas City. It originated in Columbia, Missouri, and has grown to roughly 215 sites, mostly in the United States. Since 1996, all Ice Bowls have combined to raise over $3.8 million for charities that help fight hunger at the local level.
Bishop Sullivan Center serves as the primary beneficiary for Kansas City’s version of the event. The organization has received nearly $100,000 since it was named the event’s agency of choice.
“Our primary goal is to stamp out hunger,” said Jack Lowe, KCFDC Vice President and Parks Development Director. “and there is a personal connection with the Bishop Sullivan Center in that they are a Northeast patriot to the entire Kansas City area.”
Each year, the Ice Bowl event date is determined by proximity to other major events such as the Super Bowl (so as not to have conflict of scheduling). Weather concerns do not bother participants – the event takes place rain, shine, or as the name implies, ice.
“Our motto is ‘No Wimps, No Whiners,’” said Lowe. “In 2004, we played in one and a half inches of ice.”
Participants of all ages and skill level were welcome to participate. The entry fee was $20.00 per person, which included some souvenirs and a disc. Money raised is donated to organizations that provide assistance to low income families, such as the Northeast-based Bishop Sullivan Center.
The event will be held next year at Blue Valley Park – a 238-acre city park with a disc golf course – which is boasted as the largest disc golf only course in the world. The goal for the new location will be to divide it into three separate 18-hold courses.
“Blue Valley is a gorgeous piece of property, and being able to get more foot traffic on the land is something that I am always working hard to do.” Lowe added. “My hope is that this will invigorate that opportunity for us to be a valued park partner, and to work toward having more appropriate activity within one of the best parks in the city.”
Being a Northeast resident himself, Mr. Lowe wanted to drive KCFDC’s charitable efforts locally. That’s one reason why he pushed for Bishop Sullivan Center the serve as the event’s charitable agency of choice.
“It is our belief that the BSC can better serve the people in need of food directly,” Lowe said.
Anyone wanting to know more about the Ice Bowl or the Kansas City Flying Disc Club can visit Icebowlhq.com or kcfdc.org.