JENNIFER FIERRO • STAFF WRITER
BURNET — Former Texas Tech University head football coach Spike Dykes barely had time to catch his breath during the Seton Care-A-Van Tailgate Party on June 17.
Just as he finished one conversation, he saw someone else who wanted to say hello to him.
But Dykes, who along with longtime friend Emory Bellard, helped create the party and golf tournament 13 years ago, didn’t mind. To him, it was more of a family reunion.
“I think it’s incredible,” he said after hugging granddaughter Charli. “So many people work so hard to make it happen. It’s an unbelievable result.”
This year’s Emory Bellard-Spike Dykes Seton Kids Care-A-Van Tailgate Party and Golf Classic brought in $230,000 to keep the mobile clinic on its mission of providing health care services to uninsured children in the Highland Lakes.
About 215 golfers played in the four-person scramble, while 500 people attended the tailgate party.
Though Bellard died in 2011, the event carries on, and Dykes couldn’t help but reflect on his friend.
“He’s the guy who got in it,” he said.
More than a decade ago, Bellard was asked to count the number of children who used the services of the Care-A-Van. So he did and was stunned at the large number. That’s when he called his coaching buddies, including Dykes, and told them they had to do an event to keep the van going.
The result is one of the most popular summer events in Burnet County because it includes a fine meal, auctions and golf at a great facility at Delaware Springs Municipal Golf Course, Dykes said.
“I think everybody has a lot of fun,” he said. “When you have a good time and it’s for a good cause, I think it’s great. It’s been fun.”