1st For Fishing

Chuck LaMar's Mercury Grand Slam Celebrity Fishing Tourney to raise money for kids' cancer research

The 7th Annual Chuck LaMar's Mercury Grand Slam Celebrity Fishing Tournament will take place November 12-14, from the Renaissance Vinoy Resort and Golf Club, the exquisitely restored Mediterranean Revival resort hotel in the heart of St. Petersburg, Florida.

June 8, 2004--Offshore Division Added to November's Prestigious Catch & Release Event in Tampa Bay Benefiting Pediatric Cancer Foundation

Anglers and celebrities will pair up this November in another first class pro-am catch and release fishing tournament in Tampa Bay, to raise money for The Pediatric Cancer Foundation.

The 7th Annual Chuck LaMar's Mercury Grand Slam Celebrity Fishing Tournament will take place November 12-14, from the Renaissance Vinoy Resort and Golf Club, the exquisitely restored Mediterranean Revival resort hotel in the heart of St. Petersburg, Florida.

Sports and entertainment celebrities will join avid fishermen in their quests to hit a grand slam for snook, redfish and trout, while raising money to help "Reel In The Cure" for childhood cancer.

This event is named for avid angler Chuck LaMar, general manager of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays baseball club; as well as for title sponsor, Mercury Marine, worldwide builder of Mercury Outboards.

Among the early confirmed celebrity entrants are: current and former MLB managers and players Wade Boggs, Doug Creek, Dennis Rasmussen, John Cerutti, Gene Lamont, Billy Koch and Jimy Williams; former NFL players including Hall of Famer Ted Hendricks, Mark Cotney, Mark Cooper and Tim Irwin; national TV fishing show hosts Stu Apte, Roland Martin, Jose Wejebe, Shaw Grigsby, Mark Sosin and Blair Wiggins; two-time NASA shuttle astronaut Bruce Melnick; Secret Service hero Eric Littlejohn; and actors Brett Cullen of "Apollo 13," James B. Sikking of "Hill Street Blues" and Ed Marinaro of "Hill Street Blues".

Event highlights include Friday morning, November 12's "Casting For A Cure" shootout; followed by The Steve Yerrid Kid's Fishing Derby, in which children with cancer learn the sport, fish, then share lunch with tournament celebrities.

Friday evening is the Fishermen's Ball presented by Mercedes-Benz USA. This tropical fiesta will feature dinner, entertainment, and live and silent auctions, at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg. Fishermen's Ball tickets are $125 for individuals or a "Table of Hope" can be reserved for $1,250 by calling Hermun Puri at The Pediatric Cancer Foundation at 813-269-0955.

A field of 50 boats is expected to participate in the two-day tournament. Departing from the Vinoy Yacht Basin, they will fish in Tampa Bay tributaries for redfish, snook and trout. Each boat will carry a pair of anglers, along with a celebrity and professional fishing guide.

Sponsorship and angler entries for the tournament are still available by contacting The Pediatric Cancer Foundation at 813-269-0955. Coastal Conservation Association officials will provide judging, and their organization will partially benefit from event proceeds.

New this year will be an Offshore Angler Division presented by Treasure Island Charities, exclusively for fishermen who would like to explore the waters west of the beach. Beginning at 12:00 midnight on November 13, following The Fishermen's Ball, anglers in the Offshore Division will be eligible to leave their personal ports.

For the next 36 hours, offshore anglers may angle the Gulf of Mexico for the three species eligible in this division: amberjack, grouper and snapper.

About The Pediatric Cancer Foundation
The Pediatric Cancer Foundation is a nonprofit, Tampa-based charity, dedicated to funding research to eliminate childhood cancer worldwide. It was formed in 1991, when two Tampa mothers met while their infant daughters were undergoing cancer treatments. Their children beat the odds and are healthy young women today. The foundation has granted $2 million to researchers at St. Joseph's Children's Hospital in Tampa, All Children's Research Institute in St. Petersburg, and Shand's Hospital at the University of Florida in Gainesville.

For more information on Chuck LaMar's Mercury Grand Slam Celebrity Fishing Tournament contact The Pediatric Cancer Foundation at 813-269-0955, or log on to www.pcfusa.org.

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