Venus & Jenn to play in Swingtime
Williams to play in Swingtime
JENNIFER CAPRIATI and VENUS WILLIAMS HEADLINE STARS PARTICIPATING IN THE SIXTH ANNUAL SWINGTIME PRO-CELEBIRTY PRO-AM TENNIS & GOLF TOURNAMENT
Unique Contest Will Bring World-Class Pro and Coach Tom Gullikson To a South Florida Club
BOCA RATON - Tennis superstars Jennifer Capriati and Venus Williams will headline the Sixth Annual Swingtime Pro-Celebrity Pro-Am Celebrity Tennis & Golf Tournament benefiting the Tim & Tom Gullikson Foundation, Dec 11 and 12, at the Ibis Golf & Country Club in West Palm Beach, Fla. Swingtime, an event
that is designed to publicize the Gullikson Foundation's aim of assisting brain-tumor patients and their families in managing the physical, emotional and social challenges presented by the illness - world-class tennis pro Tim Gullikson passed away in 1996 at age 44 after losing his battle with brain cancer -- has raised nearly half a million dollars for the cause since its
This year marks the first time that Capriati and Williams, both former world No. 1 ranked players on the WTA Tour, will participate in Swingtime, the popular charity tournament that has become an annual "must-do" event in the South Florida community. Capriati has won three Grand Slam titles in her
distinguished career (the 2001 and 2002 Australian Open and 2001 French Open) and Williams owns four Grand Slam trophies (2000 and 2001 Wimbledon and US Open). "I'm really looking forward to taking part in Swingtime for the first time,"
Capriati said. "I've heard such great things from other players who have participated in Swingtime and the event is for such a worthy cause. Tom Gullikson was one of my first coaches and I knew Tim quite well. This event is a great way to remember Tim, and to do something really important to help
people who have been diagnosed with brain tumors."
Williams said, "I believe it's important for celebrities to take part in charitable events as way of giving back to others who need assistance. I know that Swingtime is not only going to be a fun experience, but also a way to help raise money for an excellent cause."
Joining Capriati and Williams during the exciting Swingtime weekend are recent Olympic silver medallist Mardy Fish, former world No. 1 and 17-time Grand Slam champion Chris Evert, former world No. 1 and four-time Grand Slam champion
Jim Courier, two-time Grand Slam champion Stan Smith, and two-time Grand Slam finalist Todd Martin. Other tennis stars participating in Swingtime include Mary Joe Fernandez, James Blake, Robby Ginepri, Aaron Krickstein, Corina Morariu, Brenda Schultz-McCarthy, Gigi Fernandez, Kathy Rinaldi and Justin
Gimelstob. Other sports stars - long jumper Bob Beamon, baseball's Keith Hernandez and Bill Gullickson and football Hall of Famer Paul Warfield - are also traveling to South Florida to take part in Swingtime.
"We're very excited to have Jennifer Capriati and Venus Williams, undoubtedly two of the biggest names in women's tennis, headline this year's Swingtime," said Tom Gullikson, the tennis pro and former US Davis Cup Captain, who is the
host of Swingtime each year. "With Jennifer and Venus added to the line-up with all our other illustrious participants, I anticipate the sixth annual Swingtime event to be the best one ever."
Swingtime's unique design guarantees a weekend worth of fun as well as a rare opportunity for participants to mingle with celebrities. On Saturday, Dec. 11th, a morning of round-robin doubles at Ibis, a world-class tennis facility, means that participants will be playing doubles with legends such as Chris
Evert , Jim Courier and Stan Smith. Immediately following the pro-am, a mixed doubles exhibition will feature Jennifer Capriati and Venus Williams, partnering with two of the current stars of today's men's ATP tour. The day will be capped off with Swingtime's "An Evening with the Stars" banquet, including a cocktail reception, gourmet meal, silent and live auctions, and entertainment, at the Palm Beach County Convention Center. On Sunday morning, Swingtime returns to Ibis for an enjoyable celebrity-amateur golf
"Swingtime is a great event for us to showcase how wonderful it is here at Ibis and help raise money for a worthy cause," said Stuart Tyrrell, president of Ibis Golf & Country Club. "It is definitely a special way for us to show off
both our tennis and golf facilities."
One very important reason that Swingtime has continued to grow as an annual South Florida fall event is because of the concerted efforts of our many volunteers. Each year, Barbara Quinto of Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., has overseen a volunteer force of 50 people who make Swingtime happen by providing
transportation to the out-of-town celebrities, act as ushers during the event, and manning phone calls regarding the event. Sports/event marketing experts Gwen Shusterman of Deerfield Beach, Fla., and Loretto Vella of Delray Beach,
Fla., continue to offer their assistance to their friend Michele Cope, the event director and president of C & H Events, with Swingtime.
"Volunteers are the backbone of this and any event," Cope said. "Luckily, we have a lot of tennis fans in the South Florida community and people who care about the mission of the Tim & Tom Gullikson Foundation."
In a new contest added to the lead up to Swingtime, the club that sells the largest group of tickets for Swingtime will win a one-hour appearance with Tom Gullikson at their own facility. Gullikson will either offer a coaching clinic to the group or participate in an exhibition with the club pros at the winning
facility. The club will also be recognized during the Swingtime festivities and will take a group photo with a number of the featured Swingtime participants as a keepsake.
Swingtime tennis exhibition tickets are $55 for Box Seats and $35 for General Admission. Invitations for the "Evening with the Stars" are $200, or if bought in conjunction with exhibition tickets, there is a discounted price of $150 per invitation. Groups of 10 will receive a 10% discount on exhibition tickets. There are also a few choice spots remaining to take part in the tennis and golf pro-ams. For information, phone C & H Events at 561-394-9190.