A family affair
Three generations support Tulsa’s polo match fundraiser.
Joe Casey is pictured on his personal polo field. Each year, Casey prepares the field at Mohawk Park, where he used to play the sport, for the Center Polo Classic.
When the Center for Individuals with Physical Challenges decided to organize a polo match fundraiser in 2013, Executive Director Lori Long was told by many that if the Center was to reignite interest among Tulsans and do the sport justice, Joe Casey was the only man for the job.
“It took us a while to make the right connections and get introduced to him,” Long says, “but it was worth it.”
Joe, a Tulsa resident since 1959 and a first-generation polo player, won the English Gold Cup with his Boca Raton Polo Team in 1970, bred and trained three Polo Hall of Fame horses and — most proudly — coached his son, Joey Casey, through the ranks to become one of the best polo players in the country.
This year will mark Joe’s fourth polo classic to organize at Mohawk Park. His duties include prepping the playing field and arranging players, umpires and horses. “I handle all things polo,” he says. “It brings back a lot of memories and good times of playing at Mohawk Park myself.”
Joe isn’t the only Casey instrumental in orchestrating the polo classic each year. From Florida, Joey assists with recruiting international players and securing quality horses. Joey and his 18-year-old daughter, Jacqi, travel to Tulsa each summer for the match. Last year, Jacqi competed and earned “player of the game.” She intends to compete again this year.
Long says this unique event wouldn’t be possible without the Caseys. “Because of the connections and respect the Casey family has earned in the polo community, our match has become more than a charity benefit,” she says. “It has become a high-goal polo match that features players from around the country and even internationally.”
Center Polo Classic
Friday: 6 p.m. VIP reception at the Center, 815 S. Utica Ave. $300, individuals; $500, pair. Saturday: 10 a.m., gates open; 11:30 a.m., match begins. Mohawk Park Polo Fields, 5701 E. 36th St. N. $25, adults; $10, children. tulsacenterpoloclassic.org