FAIRVIEW — Just before noon on the first tee at Chesley Oaks, a driver cuts through the air, powering the ball through the light wind — and right into the wooded area lining the first fairway.

“Uh oh,” Pastor Bob Kurtz cries out before heading into the winds to find his lie.

One chip shot later, he’s on the first green, where he buries his put for a miraculous birdie.

Not a bad start to a day of golf. But that wasn’t the first hole of the day for Kurtz. It was the 109th.

That’s because Kurtz, a minister at St. John’s Evangelical Protestant Church, was seven hours into his church’s Ironman Missions Marathon, an event seeking to raise money for abused children around the world.

For each hole played, St. John’s gets closer to its fundraising goal — while Kurtz inches nearer the national record for consecutive holes of golf played in a single marathon.

Seven hours and over 100 holes into the endeavor, Kurtz was feeling good.

“It’s great to get the first 100 holes in,” he said. “Once you get that first 100 in, it seems to go a little easier.”

By the time Kurtz finished that seventh round one hour and six minutes later, the pastor was well on his way to breaking that national record of 220— a mark he set in the same event a year ago.

“This is actually a leisurely round,” Kurtz said, explaining how he played his fourth round in 55 minutes. The secret, he said, was a good cart — a statement his grandson and caddie, 11-year-old Dillon Spicer wholly agreed with.

The other secret, Kurtz added a moment later, is actually trying to play his best game. By playing soundly, Kurtz reasoned, he cuts down significantly on the number of strokes needed per round. Taking fewer strokes gives Kurtz more energy, allowing him to play all day — and all night.

“If I wasn’t trying to shoot my age every time, it would be enormously trying,” said Kurtz, who did just that by shooting a 67 during his third round. With just under 12 more rounds necessary to break his own record, there’s a good chance Kurtz will break his own record before midnight — though he plans to play through today.

That kind of demanding golf schedule requires Kurtz to watch his diet and energy level. To keep himself fit all day, Kurtz drinks plenty of water and eats a potassium-rich diet. As for other bodily necessities, Kurtz takes short breaks in between rounds.

And that’s just part of Kurtz’s meticulously thought-out schedule. For every hole, Kurtz is joined by a caddie, two spotters and two scorers. And all of them are volunteers, meaning all proceeds go to charity.

“We are officially an eyelash under $30,000,” Kurtz said happily, referring to the amount of money his marathon has raised so far. “And that’s just outstanding.”

That total is about double what Kurtz and the church raised last year. This time around, proceeds are going to Daystar, Harbor House, Pilot Light Home, Brook’s Place and Connie’s Place.

“It’s just so satisfying,” Kurtz said. “People that I don’t even know have been wishing me luck around town.”

But as far as the golf goes, Kurtz doesn’t seem to need much luck.

After shorting an eagle putt on 14, Kurtz missed his best chance to equal that 67 from his third round. But after a par on 18, he finished with a very respectable 69 — good for 3-under par.

To which Kurtz uttered some reluctant acceptance.

“I told you it was a bland round.”

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