Puerto Vallarta, Mexico -- 11/15/2012 -- It was a dream destination. It was a competition and a spectacular, star-studded event. But, chiefly, it had a real purpose – which resulted in the generation of $400,000 (USD) NET raised in benefit of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
The Seventh Annual Hook the Cure powered by IOTEC fishing tournament, held November 8-11, in the glow of the Mexican tropical paradise, was, per norm, so much more than a 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. And it's so much fun, with so much to do and real competitive fishing and a Nicklaus-designed course at Vista Vallarta Club de Golf. But there is an underlying purpose. And that is 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 (USD) million since its inception, thanks to the obvious worthiness of its mission but also to the nearly-disarming array of interests it caters to. This year's event – 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, Barefoot Wine and Millie and Severson – 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 passed appetizers, mariachi and casino action. Volunteers were provided by PVRPV.com.
Friday arrived and a parade of boats departed from Charter Dreams, at Marina Vallarta, for the first day of fishing– which 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, featuring signature courses developed by Jack Nicklaus and Tom Weiskopf, offers some of the most breathtaking views of Puerto Vallarta imaginable. Later Saturday, after the anglers returned to the Villa Premiere Hotel and Spa, the results were tallied and the 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, which featured over 150 items, including sports memorabilia, American Airlines vacation packages and more.
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 no-hitter, as a member of the Boston Red Sox, against the Cleveland Indians. The left-handed pitcher's career spanned 21 years with the Seattle Mariners, Texas Rangers, Los Angeles Dodgers, Oakland Athletics, New York Yankees, and the St. Louis Cardinals. Also joining the Hook the Cure celebrity list was Rick Honeycutt who played with the Seattle Mariners, Texas Rangers, Los Angeles Dodgers, Oakland Athletics, New York Yankees, and the St. Louis Cardinals. He pitched in 30 post-season games, including 20 league championship series games and seven World Series games including the Oakland Athletics 1989 World Series championship team.
HOOK THE CURE will return to Puerto Vallarta for the 8th annual event November 7th through 10th, 2013. Hook The Cure will sell-out, so please register early!