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Bags tournament benefits children’s groups

Katie Kohler | Monday, October 13, 2008

In order to raise money for the fast-growing Big Brothers Big Sisters Club of Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s, senior Charlie Cummings hosted, organized and orchestrated the first annual Bags for Kids 2008 on Saturday.

More than 40 teams of two participated in the bag tossing tournament, which raised more than $300 which the University will match, bringing the grand total to $600.

Cummings organized the event because he knew how much the club benefits the children of South Bend through mentoring.

“We wanted to raise awareness about Big Brothers Big Sisters. The club currently has a waiting list of children in South Bend that want to be matched up with Notre Dame students – especially boys – so we were hoping that the tournament would spark some interest in the club and lead some students to sign up to be ‘Bigs,'” Cummings said.

While the event was organized independently of Big Brothers Big Sisters, all of the proceeds are going directly to the organization. Cummings collected the sets of boards and bean bags, invited the attendees, and arranged for Chicken Jackson, his roommate’s band, to play at the tournament as well.

Even though 40 teams registered, many more people came to take part in the festivities.

“Many people came to cheer for their friends and show their support for Big Brothers Big Sisters,” Cummings said.

There was a $10 registration fee and the event took place at Cummings’ house on St. Peter’s Street.

Because of this year’s success, Cummings hopes the tournament will become a tradition. “I’d encourage people to hold the tournament again next year. It really couldn’t have turned out any better than it did. We had a great turnout, a fun, competitive tournament, it was a beautiful day and there was an awesome live band. I may come back next year and organize the second annual at a younger friend’s house,” he said.

Cummings was happy to combine his love for the game and donating to a great cause, he said.

“I am really happy we were able to combine a fundraiser for a great cause with a Bags tournament, which is probably my favorite game,” he said. “I was also proud of my peers at Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s who showed once again that we students are always willing to come together to support those in need.”

Matt Weiser and Jim Herron were the winners of the tournament, even though the real winners were the kids, Cummings said.