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(Enlarge) Installation Commander Col. Kenneth O. McCreedy (second from left) and teammates Tom Furman, Tom Shanahan, and Dan Rota pose before teeing off on the first hole of the Parks course.

Rule number one: Have fun.

Rule number two: Get to know some people you haven't gotten to know before.

These were the guiding rules for the Commander's Cup golf tournament held Oct. 19. The tournament provided an opportunity for golfers to get out and have a good time and it also was an opportunity for the community to get to know each other.

"It's a way to bring members of the local community together with military members and just have an afternoon of camaraderie: to meet each other, visit with each other and just build good relations and to build bridges," said Col. Kenneth O. McCreedy, installation commander about his first tournament he has hosted at Fort Meade.

Doug Dehner, tournament coordinator agreed saying "the tournament is a fantastic way for relationships with the military/DoD community."

The Parks golf course, one of the two courses on Fort Meade, and the one the tournament was played on, was packed. More than 100 players participated in the tournament that started with a bang - literally. A shot was fired to begin the day's tournament, a four- man scramble. After the start each team scattered to a different hole to start play, instead of everyone waiting at the first hole to tee off.

The tournament was put together at the colonel's request by his staff and the golf course staff. McCreedy said his only role was "to show up, say a few words and hand out some prizes."

The weather was beautiful; golfers were blessed with clear skies and very pleasant temperatures, helping to set the relaxed mood that prevailed throughout the day. The courses were also in great shape. Rain the previous week and moderate temperatures helped to keep the courses green and pretty.

"We couldn't have asked for a better day to be out here. When you had a bad shot you could look out and you didn't feel quite so bad because it was so pretty," said McCreedy. "You know, if its pouring rain or something then the bad shots hurt more."

The tournament promised players a $10,000 prize to anyone who could hit a hole in one on the 10th hole. A hole in one is always difficult, but this hole was especially tough because it was a longer par three, 185 yards from the tee to the center of the green, and the wind lightly blew against players for most of the day. Still, someone from every group approaching the tee half-joked (half-swore) they would be the one to win the prize. No one did, the closest was a shot by Brian Reinhardt that was within seven feet of the pin. Despite no big prize, none of the players got upset or lost their jovial attitudes. Everyone obeyed the first rule, and had a good time.

"I thought it was a great success," said McCreedy. "Everybody I talked to was having a great time ... and I think we accomplished what we set out to do, we met other people, had a good time, and we did a lot of visiting... I think it was a perfect event."

The next tournament is expected to be held sometime in the spring and is mostly organized through invitation; the Fort Meade community is welcome to enter if they put together a group, though. McCreedy said the only thing he hopes to change with the next one is he'd "like to play better!"

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