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Mississippi casinos bring PGA Champions Tour event to Fallen Oak

7 March 2011

JACKSON, Mississippi -- (PRESS RELEASE) -- An association of local businesses - including four competing casino resorts - has come together to bring the PGA Champions Tour's Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic to the Magnolia State for a second straight year.

This year's Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic takes place March 31-April 3 at Fallen Oak, the highly acclaimed amenity golf course of Beau Rivage Resort & Casino. The event is uniquely funded by 14 consortium partners, who see the event as the ideal way to showcase the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

"It's immensely gratifying to see these businesses collaborate their efforts and bring this great event to our state," said Mary Beth Wilkerson, the state's Division of Tourism Director. "These 14 businesses realize how beneficial it is to showcase the area with such a prominent event. Golf fans worldwide will see how beautiful Fallen Oak and Mississippi are via the extensive Golf Channel coverage."

Mississippi has established itself as perhaps the world's best golf-and-gaming destination, making it a natural for IP Casino Resort and Spa, Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Biloxi, Grand Biloxi Casino Hotel & Spa and Beau Rivage Resort & Casino to jointly help fund the tournament. The other businesses include Mississippi Development Authority, Mississippi Power, BP America, Habitat for Humanity of the Mississippi Gulf Coast, Cellular South, F.E.B. Distributing, W.G. Yates & Sons Construction, Roy Anderson Corp, Hancock Bank and Coca-Cola.

The Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic is expected to bring tens of thousands of golf fans to the area and have an economic impact of tens of millions of dollars.

A field of 78 - including at least three World Golf Hall of Famers (Bernard Langer, Hale Irwin and Tom Kite) and 10 major championship winners - will play for a total purse of $1.6 million and a $240,000 first-place share.

Following last year's inaugural event, Fallen Oak received rave reviews from players, caddies, media and fans. The Tom Fazio-design has been honored by numerous national golf publications, including debuting No. 19 on Golf Digest's list of America's 100 Greatest Public Courses (May 2009) and being ranked No.2 on Golfweek's 2010 list of the "Best 50 Casino Courses" in the U.S.

Tickets for the Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic are just $15. Children ages 15 and under will be admitted free of charge when accompanied by a ticketed adult. For more information, please visit www.VisitMississippi.org.

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