Our Chiang Mai International Rotary Club (CMIRC) Golf Ball Drop Fundraiser was the very first fundraiser for our club. It began with a suggestion by Charter Member Laurence O’Keeffe (now deceased) to do a helicopter golf ball drop, which he was familiar with from his days as a Rotarian in Australia. Laurence began researching how and where such an event could be held in Chiang Mai. The helicopter could be found, but unfortunately, government regulations soon appeared on the horizon. The regulations stated, more or less, that objects could not be dropped from powered aircraft of any type.
Laurence, being the determined and dedicated Rotarian, began thinking about alternate ways of dropping golf balls from the air. He discovered the Chiang Mai International Balloon Festival and determined that golf balls could be dropped from a tethered balloon. The club then partnered with the festival to conduct our first GBD Fundraiser at the Gymkhana Club in December 2014.
Scheduling problems delayed our next GBD in partnership with the Festival to March 2016 at the main campus of Payap University.
The next GBD was held at the Cowboy Army Riding Club in March 2018. We were unable to drop the balls from a tethered balloon due to the presence of a royal motorcade on the adjoining road, and nothing was permitted to be higher than the motorcade - balloons were grounded. A Golf Ball Draw from a bucket was substituted "on the fly"!
After the demise of the Chiang Mai International Balloon Festival and the arrival of Covid-19, our next GBD occurred in November 2022 in partnership with the Chiang Mai Expats Club at Horizon Village, with the balloon being provided by Balloon Adventure Thailand.
Our upcoming Charity GBD on November 4th will be held again in partnership with the Chiang Mai Expats Club at Horizon Village, with the balloon again being provided by Balloon Adventure Thailand.
This event gives CMIRC exposure to our Chiang Mai community, permits club members to work together in putting on the event, promoting, and selling GBD tickets. These tickets are sold globally and help raise awareness of CMIRC worldwide. So, go forth and sell! All net proceeds from the event will go to CMIRC’s current and future children’s safety, health, and education projects in Northern Thailand.