Batten disease is a genetic disorder affecting between two and four of every 100,000 children born in the United States. Golf course architect David Kahn's daughters, Mackenzie and Amelia, were diagnosed with Batten disease in 2017. Symptoms can vary, but creeping blindness and the gradual onset of regular seizures between 5 and 10 years of age is common.
Since the girls' diagnosis, the golf community has rallied around the Kahn family in a big way. Every fall, the ForeBatten Foundation, started by Kahn and his wife, Karen, holds an online fundraiser in the form of a charity auction that centers on donated rounds at some of the world's greatest golf courses, as well as other experiences that command huge donation dollars. All proceeds go toward the foundation, which seeks to both fund research aimed at improving treatments of the disease and supporting the community of families affected by it.
Take A Swing Fore Batten V Online Auction is LIVE! Head tohttps://t.co/d0E08xCF1I to the see the once-in-a-lifetime experiences,#exclusivegolfcourses and #dreamvacations available this year. Bidding continues through October 11th.#golfforgood#RareDisease pic.twitter.com/NuG8X5B5hx— ForeBatten Foundation (@forebatten) September 27, 2022
The 2022 edition of the auction might be the biggest yet, with an incredible menu of hosted rounds of golf at courses most of us would never otherwise have a chance of playing. Major championship hosts and other luminaries that regularly appear on American and even world top 100 lists are up for grabs, and while the cost to play may be steep, the experience will only be made more gratifying for the knowledge that the proceeds are being channeled to the noblest of causes.
It's not all super-high-dollar experiences, by the way. Several available items will likely go for a couple hundred dollars per person or so, so there might be something that suits a more modest budget, too.
ForeBatten Foundation auction 2022: 10 amazing golf experiences you could win
The course: Sand Hills Golf Club - Mullen, Neb.
The details: Two days of golf for four people sandwiched around a night spent on property at the Coore & Crenshaw course known by many as the best built since World War II.
Latest bid (as of press time): $12,550
The course: Valley Club of Montecito - Santa Barbara, Calif.
The details: A round of golf for 3 at Alister MacKenzie's SoCal masterpiece, restored in 2007 by Tom Doak.
Latest bid (as of press time): $5,100
The course: Grove XXIII - Hobe Sound, Fla.
The details: Golf for 3, joined by retired NFL quarterback Tyler Palko, at the club Michael Jordan built for himself and golf-obsessed friends just north of Jupiter. Chances are good the winning bidders will get face-time with M.J. himself.
Latest bid (as of press time): $22,100
The course: Merion Golf Club (East) - Ardmore, Penn.
The details: Golf and lunch for 3 people at the five-time U.S. Open host consistently regarded as one of America's very best courses, laid out by Hugh Wilson.
Latest bid (as of press time): $9,000
The course: The Country Club - Pepper Pike, Ohio
The details: Not to be confused with The Country Club outside Boston, which hosted the 2022 U.S. Open, this exclusive club outside Cleveland, also undergoing its own Gil Hanse-led restoration, will welcome 3 golfers for a round and lunch.
Latest bid (as of press time): $950
The course: Crystal Downs - Frankfort, Mich.
The details: 36 holes of golf for 3 people, hosted by PGA Tour pro Nick Hardy at the Alister MacKenzie/Perry Maxwell gem in Northern Michigan.
Latest bid (as of press time): $20,000
The course: Lost Rail Golf Club - Gretna, Neb.
The details: Golf and lunch for 3 at this Scott Hoffman design just southwest of Omaha, which has only been open for a few weeks.
Latest bid (as of press time): $1,160
The course: The Olympic Club (Lake) - San Francisco, Calif.
The details: Golf and lunch for 3 at the iconic Bay Area club that hosted the 2012 U.S. Open and 2021 U.S. Women's Open.
Latest bid (as of press time): $6,750
The courses: Gozzer Ranch, CDA National Reserve and Hayden Lake Country Club - near Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
The details: A mini golf trip tour of three private clubs around beautiful Coeur d'Alene in northern Idaho for 4 golfers, including two nights' lodging at Hayden Lake.
Latest bid (as of press time): $12,100
The course: Goodwood Golf Club - Cedar Valley, Ontario, Canada
The details: Golf and lunch for 3 at this little-known, tiny-membership, super-exclusive Donald Steel/Martin Ebert design north of Toronto.
Latest bid (as of press time): $950
The course: Tara Iti - Mangawhai, New Zealand
The details: A chance for golf for 3 and lunch at Tom Doak's most recent masterwork in the Southern Hemisphere, which has appeared very high on several "world top 100" lists.
Latest bid (as of press time): $2,350
Though impressive, this list barely scratches the surface in terms of what generous bidders stand to win this year. Other experiences include opportunities to shadow architects like Tom Doak and Gil Hanse, as well as golf with athletes like Jason Kidd. There's also an opportunity to spend a day with Jack Nicklaus on offer.
Bidding on the 2022 ForeBatten Foundation auction concludes on October 11 at 11:00 pm. Click here to see all the items up for bid.