C Spire to tee off 2014 Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic with spectacular golf shot by defending champion Michael Allen

Professional golfer will try to hit a floating “green” in the Gulf of Mexico from a special three-story-high tee at Beau Rivage Resort & Casino

Business Wire

BILOXI, Miss.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--

Michael Allen, one of the world’s best golfers and defending champion of the Mississippi Golf Resort Classic, will attempt to guide a golf ball over 150 yards of water and hit a floating “green” in the Gulf of Mexico from the three-story-high pool deck of a luxury resort hotel.

The shot over the ultimate water hazard will be attempted on Wednesday, March 19 at 1 p.m. on the tropical pool deck of Beau Rivage Resort & Casino as part of presenting sponsor C Spire’s “Blue Greens” Challenge sweepstakes, which the company is using to help kick off of the 2014 PGA Champions Tour event.

If Allen hits the 28-foot floating “green” anchored offshore in the Mississippi Sound with a golf ball on at least one of his 10 shot attempts, a contestant selected in a random drawing will win a grand prize valued at over $15,700, including a Moto X smartphone, one year of wireless service and a 2014 Yamaha VX Cruiser Wave Runner. C Spire also will donate $15,000 to the Habitat for Humanity of the Mississippi Gulf Coast, the tournament’s primary non-profit charitable beneficiary.

Allen will use environmentally friendly golf balls and volunteers will be stationed to retrieve any errant shots that miss the target and land in the water. “I enjoy a challenge and this will be a great way to generate some excitement and anticipation for the tournament,” Allen said. “It’s always a pleasure coming to Mississippi and I’m looking forward to a lot of fun, some great competition and enjoying the wonderful Mississippi Gulf Coast hospitality.”

To qualify for the grand prize and two other prizes, consumers need to take two simple steps, according to Jim Richmond, vice president of Corporate Communications for C Spire. First, they need to be a member or sign up online at cspire.com/rewards for PERCS, C Spire’s unique loyalty rewards program. They will also need to visit one of nine C Spire retail locations on the Mississippi Gulf Coast between 10 a.m. today and 5 p.m. on Monday, March 17 where they will get a chance to sink a putt on a special “blue green” inside the store. Participating C Spire stores are located in Gulfport, Biloxi, D’Iberville, Ocean Springs, Pascagoula, Lucedale, Wiggins, Picayune and Bay St. Louis.

Three winners will be chosen in a random drawing of contest entries from individuals who made the putt inside the store. Second and third place winners will automatically receive a free Moto X smartphone and one year of wireless service. The grand prize winner also will win the phone, service and qualify for the personal watercraft if Allen makes the challenging golf shot.

“We’re excited about stepping up our involvement in the tournament and continuing to support the Mississippi Gulf Coast, which has been so important to the success of our company over the years,” Richmond said. “The Gulf Coast is a special place and we want to be a part of showing the rest of the world all of its beauty, charm and Southern hospitality while having some fun.”

Richmond said the promotional contest would not have been possible without the support and involvement of tournament staff, the Beau Rivage Resort & Casino and the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources.

“We’re thrilled and proud to support the Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic and to host Michael Allen’s attempt to make history with the first golf ball to hit a floating ‘green’ in the Gulf of Mexico,” said George P. Corchis, Jr., president and COO of MGM Resorts International’s Regional Operations, which includes the 1,740-room Beau Rivage Resort & Casino. “It’s not only great entertainment, but it will also benefit a wonderful cause - the Habitat for Humanity.”

Chris Monforton, CEO of the Habitat for Humanity of the Mississippi Gulf Coast, said support from the tournament and companies like C Spire allow the non-profit group to help working families realize their dream of home ownership and to provide financial education and counseling.

“For many, owning a home is often out of reach, but with programs like this one, families are able to achieve great things,” Monforton said. “We’re proud of the 827 homes we’ve built and rehabbed over the last several years and for the community and corporate support that makes our efforts possible.”

The 2014 Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic will be held on March 20-23 at Fallen Oak in Biloxi. Tickets are $15 and available online at www.2014MGRC.com or by calling the tournament office at 228.896.6365. Children 15 and under are admitted free with a ticketed adult.

With seven World Golf Hall of Famers and 17 major championship winners, the MGRC field will feature some of the greatest golfers in the world. The field, led by 2013 champion Allen, includes six Masters Champions and all of the Top 30 players on the Champions Tour Money List.

The field is highlighted by 2013 Champions Tour Player of the Year Kenny Perry, 2013 Money Winner Bernhard Langer and 2013 Rookie of the Year Rocco Mediate. In addition, World Golf Hall of Fame members Nick Faldo and Colin Montgomerie will play for the first time, joined by fellow Hall of Famers Langer, Tom Kite, Sandy Lyle, Larry Nelson and Nick Price.

About C Spire

C Spire is a diversified telecommunications and technology services company that provides world-class service and a superior, comprehensive suite of customer-inspired wireless communications, ultra high speed Internet access and a range of other telecommunications products and services to consumers and businesses. This news release and other announcements are available at www.cspire.com/news. For more information about C Spire, visit www.cspire.com or follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/cspire or Twitter at www.twitter.com/cspire.

About the Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic Presented by C Spire

In addition to C Spire as the tournament’s Presenting Sponsor, The Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic is uniquely funded by 12 consortium partners who see this event as an ideal way to promote the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The 2014 consortium partners are: C Spire, Mississippi Power, State of Mississippi, Hard Rock Resort, Beau Rivage Hotel & Resort-Fallen Oak, Harrah’s Gulf Coast, Habitat for Humanity of the Mississippi Gulf Coast, F.E.B. Distributing, Hancock Bank, Roy Anderson Corp, W.G. Yates Construction and Coca-Cola. The tournament is administered through the MGRC Foundation, Inc. and will benefit Habitat for Humanity of the Mississippi Gulf Coast. For more information about the tournament visit www.2014mgrc.com, follow us on Facebook or Twitter at MGRclassic.

Contact:
C Spire
Dave Miller, 601-974-7725
dnmiller@cspire.com
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