It’s summer, which means one very important tradition is about to happen at CCAH: CCAH PGA. This annual putt-putt tournament is a staple of CCAH culture and has been around for almost as long as the firm itself.
It’s also the largest athletic competition of the year at CCAH, which means that participants of all ages, abilities, and affiliations brought their A-game to this Friday festivity.
“If I’m going to win anything at CCAH, it’s this,” said Trent Cubine, a summer intern and CCAH PGA hopeful. With putt-putt legend and two-time champion Sean Coogan out of the office on Friday, this tournament was anyone’s game.
CCAH PGA founder and facilitator (as well as CCAH Chairman and Partner) Jim Hussey made it clear that competition is not the focus of the tournament. “It’s been a good opportunity for team building, to take a break from things,” Hussey said.
The long history and continued excitement around CCAH PGA is a testament to the tournament’s success. “We started this tournament twenty years ago,” Hussey said. “It’s actually been going on longer than some of the participants have been alive.”
Account Representative Cindy Edward was a CCAH PGA first-timer hoping to make a strong entrance to the field. Though she began with a strong start putting through the hallway by the printer, she started to tally up the strokes in the lead-up to the front desk area. When asked about whether she had high hopes about making it to the finals, Edward responded “definitely not. It’s like poker, where when you first play, people are like ‘you did really well’ but I think this is kind of it. I’ve lost my touch.”
Many competitors dressed for the occasion, though opinion varied about which type of attire was optimal for the tournament. Account Executive Maryann Chan wore a pragmatic, professional combination of golf shirt and golf skirt, a traditional putt-putt outfit for her. Intern Trent Cubine wore a golfing glove to avoid blisters, though he was seen playing without it in the championship round.
“You’ve got to dress for the green,” said Senior Acquisition Planner Steve Paddock. “I’ve been looking for an opportunity to wear my Figment the Dragon socks for some time now. If not today, then when?”
Once the top six competitors had been determined by pool play, it was time for the course to receive some … improvements. Among the additions to the course were a barrier of pink packing peanuts, an inflatable ninja, overturned office chairs, an ornamental rug, several binders, and a plastic skeleton.
The first competitor to make it through a tricky gap by Account Rep Kyra Rogan’s desk, Kopf said that that was the moment he started to think he might have a chance to win it all. “As long as I could hit it over the leg of the plastic skeleton without it bouncing back into Shannon’s office, I thought I would probably be in the clear,” he said.
Kopf landed the shot and putted his way to the course’s end, followed by Erin Devost in 2nd and Trent Cubine in 3rd.
The only contestant under 21, Kopf appreciates the irony that he won the grand prize of a gift card to The Punchbowl Social, a popular late-night destination in Arlington. “Fortunately, they have plenty of food there too,” Kopf noted.
After the competition was done, the course disappeared as fast as it had materialized. But don’t think that the excitement of CCAH PGA is gone.
After all, CCAH PGA 2020 is just around the corner.