After a year of virtual events and social distancing, Hope Villages of America (formerly RCS Pinellas) President and CEO Kirk Ray Smith is pleased to gather golfers and bowlers of all ages for the 2021 Celebrity Classic Weekend, three fun-filled days of sports and community support.
The ever-growing roster of local and national celebrities includes NBA legends Bruce Bowen, Travis Best, and Haywoode Workman, pro golfer Shasta Averyhardt, former MLB players Grant Balfour and Gary Sheffield, MLB World Series champion Carl Everett, ABC Action News anchor James Tully, world-renowned saxophonist Mike Phillips, acclaimed trumpeter Isaac Byrd Jr. and retired local news anchor Reggie Roundtree.
“When Jay Harris (ESPN SportsCenter Anchor) and I were putting this annual event together a few years back, our intention was to bring together great people for a great cause. I know that we have such amazing and generous friends who happen to be celebrities, that care so much about our mission, and our community is humbling. We’re looking forward to an exciting weekend!” said Smith.
The 2021 Celebrity Classic Weekend is proudly presented by Siracusa Staffing & Leasing, Andrus Development Group, St. Petersburg College, Solace Insurance, BIZCO Technologies, Tampa Bay NPLOC, Crown Automotive Group, Mark Dufva – in loving memory of Neil Dufva, Clearwater Gas System, Merit Electric Company, Ultimate Medical Academy, Secondhand Cellular, Tom & Rosalyn Puderbaugh, and Kimberly DiLuigi.
The three-day-extravaganza will include activities for all the family:
• Saturday, June 5: kickoff with a VIP social hosted by presenting sponsor Siracusa Staffing & Leasing.
• Sunday, June 6: a day for family fun at Liberty Lanes, where you can bowl with the event’s celebrity hosts.
• Monday, June 7: foursomes teeing off with celebrities at Innisbrook Golf Resort, with the added chance to compete to beat the pro, make the longest drive, and Closest to the Pin.
Proceeds from the weekend will support individuals, seniors, and families throughout the year. Hope Villages of America serves hundreds of families each year by providing a spectrum of housing stability services that meet Pinellas County residents at their moment of need.
“The Haven provides emergency shelter for domestic violence survivors—and a new start in life. Grace House provides 80—or one-half—of the family shelter beds in the County,” Smith explained, “and provides dignified apartment-style emergency shelter to homeless families with children for up to two months. Goldsmith Gardens offers an affordable housing option to our participants as a ‘next step’ in their journey to self-sufficiency. None of these programs would be here without the support of those who live here and give here through events like our Celebrity Classic Weekend.”
Anyone interested in registering to bowl or play golf can do so at hopevillagesofamerica.org/celebrity-classic-weekend. Sponsorship opportunities – ranging from holes at Innisbrook and lanes at Liberty Lanes to lunch, shirt, and goody bag sponsors – are available at the same link.
About Hope Villages of America: Formerly RCS Pinellas (RCS), the organization established in 1967, is a registered 501(c)(3) organization that addresses the needs of the hungry, homeless and victims of domestic violence in Pinellas County. This mission is advanced through three distinct but integrated programs: Food Distribution & Basic Needs, Homeless Prevention Project & Housing Stability and Abuse Services. These programs operate in more than 60,000 square feet of service space and serve more than 130,000 participants annually throughout Pinellas County. In 2019 the nonprofit was awarded GuideStar’s Gold Seal of Transparency for the second year in a row and the Tampa Bay Beaches Chamber of Commerce Biggest Community Impact award. For more information, visit hopevillagesofamerica.org or call 727-584-3528.