ORLANDO, Fla. -- The birdies and bogeys have all been counted from Bay Hill, as golf's professional circus gets set to pitch its tent next week on the fabled grounds of Augusta National.
But there is another piece of important bookkeeping from the Arnold Palmer Invitational, much more significant than the big ol' cardboard check for $1.08 million that tournament winner Martin Laird can hopefully cash someplace.
The invitational -- coupled with the other Palmer philanthropic partners (including himself) -- will raise about $4 million for the Arnold Palmer Medical Center, which includes Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children and Winnie Palmer Hospital for Women and Babies.
No wonder the marketing folks over there call it "the hospital that golf built."
The tournament provides a nice paycheck for the 73 pros who made the cut. It gives thousands of spectators a chance to take in Florida's fabulous weather. But that charitable push is a pretty incredible thing that not many people notice.
Ask pro golfer Annika Sorenstam.
Her son William Nicholas McGee was born prematurely -- weighing just 2.12 pounds -- on March 21. He is under care now at Winnie's place.
The patients from Arnie's namesake hospital include 10-year-old Carson Chorney. Five years ago, he was rushed to the hospital after doctors found a tumor the size of a grapefruit in his belly. He was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, a cancerous tumor that develops from nerve tissue of children and infants.
The tumor was too big to take out, so after a biopsy, doctors started Carson on six rounds of chemotherapy. It took four rounds before the tumor was small enough to remove.
Carson, withering and weak from all the radiation, dropped to 30 pounds. He spent 160 days in the hospital before needing more treatment at Shands Children's Hospital in Gainesville and later at another facility in New York for a stem-cell transplant.
The cancer isn't in remission. Doctors label his condition "No evidence of disease." That's even better.
Carson, a big golf fan, was at Bay Hill on Sunday cheering for his uncle, D.A. Points. Carson's guy finished way down on the leaderboard -- in a tie for 56th. But D.A. did not go home terribly disappointed or disgruntled.
D.A. gets it. He understands there are far more important things in life than how well he hits a golf ball. His nephew is healthy. Carson's day no longer starts with an ominous cloud of uncertainty.
That's why Points spent an hour mingling with the crowd on Friday afternoon, chipping shots into a floating green in the shape of the Travelers red umbrella. Travelers donated $2,500 to the Arnold Palmer Hospital, in conjunction with the event.
"My little $2,500 isn't that much," Points said, "but every little bit counts."
Carson did not remain unscathed from his ordeal. He lost one of his kidneys and his adrenal gland, and has limitations on the sports he can play -- football is out -- but otherwise is healthy, vibrant living proof of what this tournament means to so many families.
"You know that your grandparents, your dad, your mom, your aunt and uncle may have cancer one day, but never your child," said Tiffany Chorney, Carson's mom. "It's a life-changing moment. It puts everything in perspective."
Carson's illness almost bankrupt the family. Insurance can only cover so much. The family got a double-whammy when the economy went belly-up, severely impacting the income that Pete Chorney was able to make with his own architectural home accessories business in Winter Garden.
But that's OK. His son is alive. The family can thank the folks at Arnie's place for helping him get healthy.
"We are constantly worrying about money, but our son is cancer-free, and there could be nothing that is more important," Tiffany said. "He is healthy, and he is happy."