COLUMBIA — Two young women sat underneath a tent Sunday afternoon to shield themselves from the sun as they waited for groups of golf carts to park nearby at the 13th hole at the Country Club of Missouri.
"It's $10 for a raffle ticket," MU cheerleader Kourtney Doss explained to participants of the John Anderson Celebrity Golf Invitational, a tournament to help raise money to support students and teachers in Missouri and the relief effort for victims of the Joplin tornado.
Fellow cheerleader Marnie Matthews was helping Doss sell raffle tickets for a chance to win a new set of golf clubs. Participants attempted to get a hole-in-one on the 13th hole to win a new flat-screen television. If their ball managed to land on the green, their ticket was thrown into a drawing for the golf clubs.
"If it doesn't get on the green, you don't get in the raffle," said Ashtynn Smith, one of three MU cheerleaders sitting under a tree near the green to keep track of the players' shots.
"Once a ball lands on the green, our male cheerleader down there congratulates the player with a high kick," Doss said.
Missouri cheer coach and mascot coordinator Suzy Thompson said Anderson, an ESPN SportsCenter anchor and MU graduate, is a long-time friend and a big supporter of the MU cheerleaders.
"He's done a lot for Missouri and for athletics," she said. "This is our way to give back and help him."
Truman the Tiger also made an appearance with the cheerleaders but stayed out of costume most of the day to avoid getting heat stroke.
The majority of the money raised went to the Food Bank for Central and Northeast Missouri, relief efforts in Joplin and to Columbia Public Schools. But Matthews said some of the money will be given to the cheerleaders for helping out.
"It will help pay for our trip to nationals in April," she said. "It usually costs us like $30,000 to go."