PrairieFire Invitational

Friday, November 27th | 1:00pm

As we embark into our first fall and winter of operation at PrairieFire Golf & Grill, we are excited to announce our first signature event, the “PrairieFire Invitational” Golf Tournament! Top amateur golfers in the area will tee it up from the eight hitting bays at PrairieFire on a virtual golf course utilizing Toptracer Range® technology.

What makes this event so unique is that players will compete for charities of their choosing, and of course, bragging rights amongst their peers.  Proceeds from the event are allocated to each player’s designated charity based on their finishing position.

Due to COVID restrictions, we will not be having spectators at the event, but will be updating this webpage and our social media pages with coverage of the event.

Stay tuned… We look forward to some exciting competition!

CHARITIES SUPPORTED

  • Miss Carly’s Rockford
  • Rockford Rescue Mission
  • 815 Alive
  • Rosecrance
  • The Carpenter’s Place
  • Byron High School Food Pantry
  • Western Golf Association (Evans Scholars Foundation)
  • Ann’s Hope Foundation for Melanoma Cancer
  • K-Cancer Softball
  • Nikolas Ritschel Foundation (Nik’s Wish)
  • Making Strides Against Breast Cancer of Rockford
  • Wee One Foundation
  • Gigi’s Playhouse Rockford
  • Muscular Dystrophy Association
  • Children’s Organ Transplant Association (Jaylen’s Battle)
  • Rockford Rescue Mission
  • Give Kids the World
  • Noah’s Ark Animal Sanctuary
  • Walter Lawson Children’s Home
  • Rock House Kids

PARTICIPANT BIOS

TJ Baker

Hometown:
Rockford, IL
Home Course:
The Mauh-Nah-Tee-See Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
Individual IHSA Class 2A State Champion (2019). Aldeen Cup Champion (2020). Plays collegiate golf at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville
Charity of Choice:
Rockford Rescue Mission
Embarrassing Moment:
In a high school tournament at Aldeen, one of my teammates hit his tee shot into the water hazard on hole #1, but it was still playable. He attempted to hit the ball out of the hazard and fell face first into the water. In order to keep playing, his parents had to bring him new clothes.

David Beto

Hometown:
Rockford, IL
Home Course:
Rockford Country Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
Illinois State Am Qualifier (1x)
Charity of Choice:
Rosecrance
Embarrassing Moment:
My most embarrassing moment on the golf course is when I topped my tee shot at the Rockford Pro Am in front of about 200 people. Very embarrassing.

Jeffrey Beto

Hometown:
Belvidere, IL
Home Course:
Rockford Country Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
Former PGA Class A Professional, Previous Assistant Golf Professional at Medinah CC, US Mid Am Qualifier (2x), Campbell University PGM Player of the Year
Charity of Choice:
Carpenter’s Place because it is near and dear to my heart and I am the current Board President.
Embarrassing Moment:
4-putted the final green of the Merit Amateur 2 years in a row.

Trent Brown

Hometown:
Byron, IL
Home Course:
PrairieView Golf Club & The Mauh-Nah-Tee-See Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
Club Champion – PrairieView Golf Club (2019)
Charity of Choice:
BHS Food Pantry
Embarrassing Moment:
I was lucky enough to make a Hole-In-One on Hole #8 at PrairieView. I didn’t put the ball in a “safe” place. We then made the quick ride up to the 9th tee and I proceeded to “Hook” my drive over German Church Rd. Our group was no longer able to locate my Hole-In-One ball.

Andrew Canfield

Hometown:
Oregon, IL
Home Course:
PrairieView Golf Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
Played golf at St. Ambrose University, as well as Rock Valley College where I was fortunate enough to become an All-American. Gold Medal Classic Champion (2013, 2019), Club Champion – PrairieView Golf Club (2014, 2020)
Charity of Choice:
Western Golf Association (Evans Scholars Foundation)
Embarrassing Moment:
My very first high school tournament was a varsity golf match as a freshman. I was nervous to get going and, unfortunately, played some of the worst golf ever. After the round was over, not only did I shoot 63 for 9-holes, but my playing competitors told me that I would be disqualified for teeing off in front of the tee markers on the very first hole.

Robert Dofflemyer III

Hometown:
Rockford, IL
Home Course:
The Mauh-Nah-Tee-See Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
Played collegiate golf at Lewis University. Rockford Men’s City Champion (2013, 2019). Mauh-Nah-Tee-See Match Play Champion (2020).
Charity of Choice:
Ann’s Hope Foundation. This charity raises awareness for Melanoma and raises money for Melanoma research. My sister-in-law was diagnosed with Melanoma in 2009.
Embarrassing Moment:
In college, my teammates and I were juggling golf balls with our wedges and hitting the balls out of mid air into a nearby lake during a practice round. I had the bright idea of trying to do the same thing with my driver. I successfully made contact with the golf ball on the first try! Unfortunately, my driver head snapped off and also went flying into the lake. I was able to borrow a driver for the tournament, but safe to say I haven’t tried to attempt this again since.

Tom Henry

Hometown:
Loves Park, IL
Home Course:
Aldeen Golf Club & Timber Pointe Golf Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
Club Champion – Timber Pointe GC (5x), 2020 Club Champion – Aldeen GC
Charity of Choice:
KCancer
Embarrassing Moment:
When I was 6 years old, my father let me drive the golf cart. He jumped out to go hit a chip shot and I proceeded to drive up right next to the pin!

Mick Hockinson

Hometown:
Rockford, IL
Home Course:
Aldeen Golf Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
Learned the game at Age 8 from my father. Played golf all through High School & College and participated in 2 national collegiate tournaments.
Charity of Choice:
Nikolas Ritschel Foundation (Nik’s Wish)
Embarrassing Moment:
When my wife and I were first married (she does not play golf), I signed us up for a Husband/Wife tournament. The format was alternate shot with a selected drive. I thought we would wrap it up. All she had to do was advance the ball, I would take care of the rest. On the 4th hole, two guys behind us ran up to the tee screaming that it was illegal for me to tee off from the Ladies tee, and what was I thinking?! Once calmed down I had to explain to them that I had hit my drive out of bounds and my wife whiffed her tee shot. So, I then left her ball on the tee and was hitting our second shot…GOLF…a humbling game!

David Nagel

Hometown:
Rockford, IL
Home Course: Ingersoll Golf Course
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
T-6 Rockford Men’s City Championship (2020)
Charity of Choice:
Rock Kids House
Embarrassing Moment:
Every time I tee it up is embarrassing!

Garrett Ralston

Hometown:
Loves Park, IL
Home Course:
Atwood Golf Course
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
2-time All Conference Player at Wisconsin Lutheran College. Aldeen Cup Champion (2017).
Charity of Choice: Muscular Dystrophy Association – I chose this charity because my mom has a very rare form of muscular dystrophy that is currently incurable.
Embarrassing Moment:
My most embarrassing golf memory is making a 10 on my first ever collegiate hole as a Freshman.

Brian Silvers

Hometown:
Byron, IL
Home Course:
The Mauh-Nah-Tee-See Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
Started playing golf when I was 25 years old. I have 8 aces, and 1 double eagle, albatross.
Charity of Choice:
Rockford Rescue Mission. Helping others is the meaning of life!
Embarrassing Moment:
Making a 12 on the last hole of the Rockford City Tournament.

Trent Snodgrass

Hometown:
Byron, IL
Home Course:
PrairieView Golf Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
Individual IHSA Class 1A State Champion, IHSA Class 1A Team Champions (2x), Played Division 1 Golf at Western Illinois and Northern Illinois University.
Charity of Choice:
Give Kids the World – I chose this charity because kids battling illnesses should be given the opportunity to have positive and fun experiences.
Embarrassing Moment:
The day after my 15th birthday, I made a hole-in-one from the tips on the hardest hole, but was by myself and no one witnessed it. Being that young, I didn’t know that it didn’t count.  So, I went to my dad and the head pro at the time and told them I had made a hole-in-one. They both laughed and told me “Too bad it didn’t count” and I was so upset and angry, while they thought it was hilarious. Now, it’s humorous because I haven’t made a hole-in-one since.

Adam Tobias

Hometown:
Rockford, IL
Home Course:
Aldeen Golf Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
Have been playing competitive golf for about 5 years now with a few Top-5 finishes in local tournaments.
Charity of Choice:
Noah’s Ark Animal Sanctuary
Embarrassing Moment:
My most embarrassing moment I’ve experienced on the course would be hitting myself in the face with a golf ball while attempting a trick shot for some friends.

Jason Wombacher

Hometown:
Byron, IL
Home Course:
PrairieView Golf Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
Four-year letterwinner at the University of Iowa. Winner of the 2000 Hawkeye Intercollegiate, Low Round of 62, Gold Medal Classic Champion (2016).
Charity of Choice:
Walter Lawson
Embarrassing Moment:
In high school, I hooked a drive out of bounds on the 18th hole and made an 8. I missed going to the State Tournament by 1 shot.

Ryan Jahn

Hometown:
Byron, IL
Home Course:
Sunset Golf Course
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
Former PGA Member & Hooters Tour Member.
Charity:
Wee Won Foundation
Embarrassing Moment:
I was playing an Arnold Palmer course in college and hit the clubhouse while Arnold Palmer was outside.

Mike Morig

Hometown:
Rockford, IL
Home Course:
Aldeen Golf Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
Started playing golf at the age of 10. Have a few Top 10’s in local tournaments. 3rd Place Winnebago County Amateur (2018). Pheasant Run 2-Man Turkey Shootout Champions (2019).
Charity: Gigi’s Playhouse – I chose this charity because my wife is on their board and does a lot of work with them.
Embarrassing Moment:
I once bladed a bunker shot that hit my buddy in his head, on his birthday. Luckily, he was okay!

Cody Rhymer

Hometown:
Rockford, IL
Home Course:
Sandy Hollow Golf Course
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
Played at Guilford High School as well as McKendree University. Advanced to the State tournament Senior year of High School.  Melvin Ballard Memorial Champion (2019). 3rd Place in Rockford Men’s City Tournament (2020).
Charity: COTA for Jaylen’s Battle
Embarrassing Moment:
Playing at Aldeen Golf Club when I was in high school with my brother and best friend and we made it to #18 and were racing against a giant storm and lost. We spent the majority of the 18th hole running with our bags on our backs trying to get to our cars without getting struck by lightning. The funny part is that one person in the group was smart and wanted to call it quits before the storm reached us but since we live in a democracy the other two of us voted to keep playing so we all had to suffer. Luckily no one got fried and we laugh about it now!

Ryan Arnold

Hometown: Roscoe, IL
Home Course: The Mauh-Nah-Tee-See Club

Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements: Started playing golf at the age of 10. Played 2 years of high school golf. 5 wins on the Golf Week Amateur Tour. Golf Week Amateur Rookie of the Year (2017).
Charity: Miss Carly’s of Rockford
Embarrassing Moment: I was visiting some buddies in Texas and they decided it would be funny to play the fake snake prank. I’m deathly afraid of snakes, everyone I play with knows that. I see the snake and proceed to scream and take off running. I end up tripping and falling and ripping my pants when I fell on the pavement. I was probably more angry, but embarrassing nonetheless.

Mike Rans

Hometown: Rockford, IL
Home Course: Forest Hills Country Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements: Started playing golf at the age of 12 and have held a single digit handicap for the past 30 years.
Charity: Rockford Boys & Girls Club
Embarrassing Moment: Once got the shanks and shot 55 in a 9-Hole high school match.

Aaron Yardley

Hometown: Rockford, IL
Home Course: Forest Hills Country Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements: FHCC Invitational Champions (2019).
Charity: Rockford Boys & Girls Club
Embarrassing Moment(s): I once played Tony Robbins motivational tapes while suffering through a terrible round.

Marcus Smith

Hometown:
Rockford, IL
Home Course:
PrairieView Golf Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
I started when I was 4 years old and gained a lot of love for the game playing with my dad & grandpa almost every day. I’ve won my fair share of events growing up, but some of my favorites include: Individual IHSA Class 1A State Champion (2018). Rockford Men’s City Tournament Champion (2020). AJGA UHY Detroit Junior @ Forest Lake (2020). Golf Week Jr @ UK Big Blue GC (2020). GolfWeek Jr @ BGU Stone Ridge GC (2020).
Charity:
815 Alive. I chose this foundation for their mission which is to inspire the youth of Rockford to love, respect and cherish life by promotion self-love, a love for others, and a love for their community. They are supporting our 815 youth through education, mentoring, and providing them with opportunities to help ensure their success.
Embarrassing Moment:
I’m hitting at the driving range with my Dad. I start hitting my driver and my dad starts talking mess, saying how he can out drive me. So I bomb a couple dead straight and my dad’s like “That’s easy, I’ll show you how to hit a bomb”. He then proceeds to swing faster than I’ve ever seen him swing just to shank it about 150 yards as the end result. I won the contest and dad had to sit down after hurting himself trying to swing like me.

Troy McNulty

Hometown: Belvidere, IL
Home Course: Timber Pointe GC

Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements: Timber Pointe Club Champion (2020).
Charity: PAWS Humane Society – I chose this charity to assist them in finding homes for adoptable animals. To help reduce the overpopulation with low-cost spaying/neutering and the resulting cruelty.
Embarrassing Moment: Opening tee shot in a Minneapolis tournament hit an over-hanging branch through a narrow shoot, came straight backwards hitting the cart path multiple times. It bounded right past myself and the other players finishing 50 yards behind where we teed off. I did salvage a bogey, however!

Kyle Bahnick

Hometown: Chicago, IL
Home Course: Timber Pointe Golf Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements: CCIW 1st Team – All Region (2012). NAIA Conference Champion (2014). NAIA 1st Team – All Region (2014). PING All Regional Team (2014). Illinois Open Qualifier (2017). Timber Pointe Club Champion (2018).
Charity: Rock House Kids
Embarrassing Moment: Not recalling during handshakes and introductions, I unfortunately called a fellow competitor the wrong name for an entire tournament round. It was not until shaking hands on the 18th green did he correct me with the proper name. Needless to say, I’ve become quite good at remembering names since then!

Jamie Hogan

Hometown:
Rockford, IL
Home Course:
Aldeen Golf Club
Golf Background/Accolades/Achievements:
2nd place finisher at the 1985 IHSA State Tournament for Guilford High School. Played collegiate golf at Iowa State University and won several collegiate tournaments while leading the Cyclones to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history as the Captain. Has won a record 29 local golf tournaments. Rockford Men’s City Tournament Champion (9x). Aldeen Cup Champion (4x). Gold Medal Classic Champion (4x). Ledges Invitational Champion (5x). Atwood Classic Champion (3x). Melvin Ballard Memorial Champion (2x). Winnebago County Amateur Champion (1x). Mauh-Nah-Tee-See Match Play Champion (1x).
Charity:
Breast Cancer Research Foundation, unless we pick a Breast Cancer Charity that supports local women.
Embarrassing Moment:
In an Iowa State practice round, there was a downhill par 5 that you could hit a risky shot over a creek to get there in 2, which we always attempted. I remember one day Coach stopped his cart and was helping another team member look for his ball in the creek. I turned and saw him running after his cart, which was lumbering for the creek. He arrived at the cart just as it was breaching the bank of the waterway. He hollered out for more help to pull the cart to safety. We couldn’t get there in time. A few expletives later from Coach and the cart crashed into the creek bottom which was a good 10ft drop.

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Contact

PrairieFire Golf & Grill
6734 N German Church Rd
Byron, IL 61010

815-234-3473 (FIRE)