May 9, 2012 (South Lake Tahoe Calif./Nev.) As NBA Hall of Famer Charles Barkley once put it, “There are worse things to suck at in life than golf.” The TNT basketball analyst, weight loss pitchman, SNL host, Hank Haney poster child, humanitarian, wildly popular everyman and now political commentator will nonetheless put his game on the line once again at the American Century Championship (http://www.TahoeCelebrityGolf.com/), the celebrity golf tournament at Edgewood Tahoe, July 17-22, 2012.
Barkley will join luminaries including Michael Jordan, Tony Romo, Aaron Rodgers, John Elway, Ray Romano and Jerry Rice in the field of 78 sports and entertainment superstars at the 23rd annual tournament. Televised on NBC Sports, the 54-hole event includes a purse of $600,000.
Though his swing may resemble a helicopter going down, Sir Charles, an elder statesman of the American Century Championship, annually attracts some of the largest fan galleries. The Pied Piper of personality is one of the most ingratiating celebrities every year. He talks with the gallery, offers philosophical insights and frank opinions, takes pictures with kids, signs autographs and talks to the media all while bemoaning errant shots.
Often the last place finisher at the tournament over the years, Barkley outperformed Jimmer Fredette last July and hopes to improve his game in conjunction with his much-publicized weight loss. He is still expected to be listed at 500-1 in the Harrah’s Tahoe Sports Book when the odds are released later this month.
Sir Charles has managed to turn shaky golf into a comedic art form and does it with a heart of gold. Behind the scenes, Barkley has become an ambassador for Tahoe South, helping aid victims of the 2007 Angora Fire with $190,000 in donations and treating 100 firefighters and their families to dinner.
Celebrity sightings, parties and superstar entertainment are on tap for South Lake Tahoe during the week-long festivities. The tournament has been played at Edgewood Tahoe’s 6,707-yard lakeside course since its launch in 1990.
Tickets are available for advance purchase online at www.TahoeSouth.com or www.TahoeCelebrityGolf.com and daily during the tournament at the gate. Tickets are also available at 127 Raley’s, Nob Hill and Bel Air locations throughout Northern California and Nevada beginning June 1.
Tickets for Tuesday and Wednesday practice rounds and the Thursday Celebrity-Am are $15 each day; and $25 for each tournament round, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. A Patron Badge Season Pass, good for admission all six days, will be on sale for $50 through May 31. Beginning June 1, the price is $60. Kids 10 and under are free when accompanied with a paid adult.
For the seventh consecutive year, the American Century Championship is proud to be supporting LIVESTRONG, which serves people affected by cancer and empowers them to take action against the world’s leading cause of death. Since the tournament’s inception in 1990, more than $4 million has been raised for a variety of national and local charities.
Tournament title sponsor American Century Investments is a leading, privately controlled investment management firm serving investment professionals, institutions, corporations and individuals. Through its ownership structure, more than 40 percent of company profits support research to help find cures for genetically-based diseases including cancer, diabetes and dementia.
For tournament tickets, information and lodging packages visit www.TahoeSouth.com/page/CelebGolf. Harrah’s Lake Tahoe and Harveys Lake Tahoe are celebrity-central during the event as the official host hotels.
The American Century Championship is also on Facebook and Twitter. For the latest details on the tournament, celebrity tweets, fan contests and more, click @ACChampionship and here facebook.com/LTCelebrityGolf to join the fun and stay in touch between now and tournament time. For all the tournament information: www.TahoeCelebrityGolf.com.