Puerto Vallarta, Mexico - It was a dream destination. It was a competition and a spectacular, star-studded event. But it had a real purpose – which resulted in the generation of $400,000 NET raised in benefit of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
The Seventh Annual Hook the Cure powered by IOTEC fishing tournament, held November 8th - 11th, in the glow of the Mexican tropical paradise, was, per norm, so much more than an IGFA-qualifier catch-and-release, offshore event.
Not only did participants enjoy one of the greatest fishing locales in world, first-class all-inclusive accommodations, gourmet meals, celebrity appearances, spa treatments, and exciting nightlife, but everyone involved knew there was a far greater purpose at hand.
"That’s really the beauty of the Hook the Cure event," said Bob Huston, event co-chairperson along with Jeff Jennison.
"Obviously, we’re in a beautiful place and we’re here to enjoy ourselves with the best of everything you could possibly imagine. It’s so much fun, with so much to do, with the extremely competitive fishing and a Nicklaus-designed course at Vista Vallarta Club de Golf. But there is the underlying purpose - to raise money for this worthy foundation. And did we ever. That’s kind of beautiful, too."
The Hook the Cure tournament, an official event of the Redbone Tournament Series, has raised $2.4 million since its inception, thanks to the obvious worthiness of its mission and the nearly-disarming array of interests it caters to.
The annual event kicked off with the Welcome to Puerto Vallarta Fiesta hosted by the Villa Premiere Hotel & Spa on Thursday, November 8. The welcoming event featured an array of appetizers, Mariachi, and casino action. Volunteers were provided by PVRPV.
Friday arrived and a parade of boats departed from Charter Dreams, at Marina Vallarta, for the first day of fishing. It was capped off with a weigh-in party featuring Nashville recording artist, Lucas Hoge.
On Saturday the anglers returned to the Marina for another day of fishing and golfers hit the links at Vista Vallarta Club de Golf. Vista Vallarta, features signature courses developed by Jack Nicklaus and Tom Weiskopf and offers some of the most breathtaking views in the region
Later Saturday, after the anglers returned to the Villa Premiere Hotel and Spa, the results were tallied and the IGFA catch-and-release tournament winners were announced. The night was capped off with a silent and live auction, hosted by Los Angeles radio personality, Shawn Parr, and featured over 150 items, including sports memorabilia and American Airlines vacation packages.
The title of 'Overall Champions' was captured by the team of Chuck Kezler and Bob Huston while 'Biggest Dorado' accolades went to Len Pieroni and Rick Dinger with their 43 pound catch. Mike and Jim Christian took home the 'Most Released Billfish' honors.
Along the way there were appearances by the likes of sports stars Matt Young – best known for his unofficial no-hitter, as a member of the Boston Red Sox, against the Cleveland Indians. Matt was a pitcher for 21 years with the Seattle Mariners, Texas Rangers, Los Angeles Dodgers, Oakland Athletics, St. Louis Cardinals, and the Yankees.
This year’s Hook the Cure event was sponsored by: IOTEC Integrated Office Technology, Watson Land Company, BJ's Restaurants, William Martin, Jr. Family, O’Connell Family Foundation, Lancaster Development, CBRE, American Airlines, Norm Wilson & Sons, Inc., Letner Roofing & Waterproofing, Skipper & Duke's Offshore Fishing Series, Hallagan Family, William Close Family, Hunter Landscape, Millie & Severson, Redbone Tournament Series, Karma Tequila, and Barefoot Wine.
Plans for the 2013 Hook the Cure event, slated for November 7th through 10th, are underway. For more information, visit hookthecure.com or contact Gary Green at ggreen(at)cff.org or by calling (714) 494-4623.
About the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation:The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation is the leading organization in the United States devoted to curing and controlling Cystic Fibrosis. Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., the Foundation has more than 80 chapters and branch offices throughout the country and supports and accredits a nationwide network of more than 115 care centers, which provide vital treatments and other CF resources to patients and families. For more information, visit cff.org.