June 13, 2024

Creating Positive Ritual

In 1971 the first annual “Invitational Golf tournament” was started by local young man who, with support from his spouse, devised a way for guys to have an excuse to play golf, poker, euchre, and drink a few beers. It was disproportionate work for the girls, lots of fun for the boys. A few Elkhart buddies and three main families made up the group. It was so much fun that, in fact, it became an annual event. Some of us would come one year, but not the next; but the three main families came every year, eventually from across the country. By 1991, the second generation also played golf, cards and skied and the friend’s kids called each other cousin and the named the mainstays “aunt” and “uncle”. They agreed that the annual event had become an important part of their lives.

In 2010 the grandkids were there and the women also play golf (and still do disproportionate work). I am told the event has become, without a thought, something that all attend. This year there were three total family pictures on the pier and also a picture of all three families…with the later being the picture that some feel is more accurate. Oh yes, some of the great grandparents came too. And the “boys and girls” from 1971 are now the “adults” or at least so named by the 30 year olds.

They still present that the event it is about the golf. I think not. Instead it is about this ritual of laughter, appreciation and love that takes form of golf, picnic and playing on the beach and pontoon rides. They let me play too and I am grateful.

Honor the positive rituals in your life and build them for yourself your friends and your family.


  1. Marsha Wirt says

    WE really need to hang on to fun times like this in our crazy world today. Reminds me of some fun times we had growing up with family and friends.

  2. Cynthia Guzzo says

    Heartily agree! I think it began as “golf” to stay connected with friends. Now it is “old” friends staying connected with golf still one of the highlights of the weekend. We all appreciate the friendships more with each passing year. Each day/year is a blessing and is realized more with the loss of those we hold so dear.

  3. Jackie Siefke says

    Thanks for thinking of me. I’ll follow your blog with interest.


  4. It’s astounding that that particular ritual has been maintained for almost forty years, bridging now three generations. It also, through fun and fellowship, reinforces the value of that type of ritual for the younger people involved who will perpetuate it and create rituals of their own.

  5. Tamra O'Keefe says

    It is great creating positive rituals, spending time with family and friends creating a lasting memory.

  6. Beth Lefever says

    It seems that we are becoming increasingly frantic and fragmented in our daily lives. Staying connected (sans technological devices, at that!)has got to be good for what ails us. Thanks, Bill, for the uplifting account of a great tradition.

  7. Linda Leslie says

    Wonderful thouoghts! Look forward to more.

  8. Linda Leslie says

    Love your blog and look forward to more!