Sunday, August 05, 2007

Another Penguins Off-Season Golf Tourney

This is about a month late, but I completely forgot about it until I read Jes's post yesterday. (My apologies!)

Every summer for the past ten years, the
Mario Lemieux Foundation (MLF) has a private celebrity golf tournament to raise money for the cancer and neonatal research projects of the MLF. Attendance is by invitation only. My husband was lucky enough to score a pass for the 2002 Mellon Mario Lemieux Celebrity Invitational from the company where he works. He got to watch the celebrities golf and was able to get autographs from Mario himself, Eddie Olczyk (just months before he was named the Pens head coach), and hall of fame goaltender Grant Fuhr, as well as many others. But like I said before, you've got to be invited to go. They don't sell these passes.

This year's tournament took place at the
Laurel Valley Golf Club in Ligonier, Pa. over two days beginning June 27 and ending the next day. The MLF website details the action:

The Mario Lemieux Foundation was proud to have Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield take over the presenting sponsorship of the Mario Lemieux Celebrity Invitational in 2007. For the second straight year, the golf event was held at the exclusive Laurel Valley Golf Club in Ligonier, PA and was closed to the public.

The star power was as strong as ever, as Mario Lemieux, Sidney Crosby, Ben Roethlisberger, Steve Spurrier, Dan Marino, Lou Holtz, Lynn Swann and a field of 35 celebrities played with Pro-Am groups on Wednesday, June 27. Presenting sponsor Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield enjoyed six Pro-Am groups, including pairings with Mario Lemieux, Brett Hull, and Marcus Allen. The team of Heinz and Grant Fuhr edged out Dan Marino’s team from Accenture to win the first-place team trophy.

This is the biggest picture of Sidney golfing I could find.

The Thursday pairings included Dan Marino, Steve Spurrier, and Jamie Dixon with Highmark, Lynn Swann with Mellon Financial Corporation, and Jim McMahon with Great-West Health Care. Pierre Larouche and his team from Duquesne Light took home the first-place Pro-Am prize.

The final day of the MLCI was the second annual celebrity-only event that pitted Team Lemieux against defending champion Team Larouche in a Ryder Cup style face-off. After winning nine of the possible 15 points in the individual morning matches, Team Lemieux held on [to] beat Team Larouche by a final score of 12½ to 10½ to etch their name on the Lemieux Celebrity Challenge trophy for the first time.

A view of the 18th green and clubhouse at Laurel Valley Golf Club.

It's so nice to see all these celebrities come together for a good cause every year. If you look at the roster on the website, you'll see LOTS of celebrity athletes and actors, many of whom make regular appearances on the MLCI. Congrats to Team Lemieux, but let's hope it doesn't take Sidney 10 years to have his name etched on Lord Stanley's Cup!!!

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