Maryland Birdies return to Ruggles

By Yvonne Johnson, APG NewsAugust 8, 2013

Maryland Birdies return to Ruggles
(Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL

ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. - For the second time since 2009, groups of Birdies from Georgia, New York, Virginia, South Carolina, Canada, and Maryland flocked to the Maryland Birdies 2013 Invitational Golf Outing, a three-day event at Ruggles Golf Course on APG North (Aberdeen) July 27.

"Birdies" communities are co-ed golf clubs committed to having fun and supporting local charities. The international golf clubs' annual charity event is hosted at a different location each year.

About half of the Maryland Birdies members are retired military, government civilians or contractors, and primarily Harford County residents, according to President Derrick Bryant, a retired lieutenant colonel and current defense contractor with Booz Allen Hamilton at Fort Meade. Bryant said the club's charter and bylaws call for it to "support the community," adding that the group is supporting the Havre de Grace Boys and Girls Clubs of America this year.

"This is old friends getting together for a good purpose," Bryant said.

Preparations to bring the outing back to APG began a year ago and group members held several planning meetings at Ruggles, he added.

"It's a complicated process, logistically. Everything has to be voted on, from food selection to tours for non-golfers," he said. "Thankfully this area offers a lot of choices."

While golfers were on the links, their spouses and guests others toured Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania before joining the golfers for the prize presentation. Other group excursions during the gathering, which ran from July 24- 27, included an Aberdeen IronBirds baseball game at Ripken Stadium; a visit to the Capitol and other sites in Washington, D.C., and an Arundel Mills Casino and shopping tour.

Vice President Ron Stallings said the 2013 event was a success.

"Everything has just gone great," Stallings said. "We absolutely enjoy APG; it's like coming home."

Ninety-four golfers and guests registered for the tournament. After the prize presentations, a bench honoring Maryland's "Fallen Birdies" was placed at the 7th Hole.

Stallings said the Maryland Birdies won the first day of the tournament which was held at the Mountain Branch Golf Course in Fallston.

"We've had a great fellowship here at APG while doing a good deed for a worthy cause," Stallings said.

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