Maui Sports

Victorino Hosts Annual Celebrity Golf Tournament

December 3, 2012, 12:42 PM HST
* Updated December 3, 12:43 PM
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By Rodney S. Yap

Shane Victorino is back where it all started, doing offseason work.

As part of the Los Angeles Dodgers All-Star Gold Glove center fielder’s commitment and dedication to giving back to communities and providing opportunities to underserved youth, Victorino and wife, Melissa, are here for their annual foundation’s celebrity dinner and golf tournament.

The 2012 event, the Passman Shane Victorino Foundation Celebrity Dinner & Golf Classic, presented by Tommy Bahama, is set for Thursday in Wailea. The fifth annual event is sold-out and features stars from the world of sports and entertainment.

“I am grateful for the opportunity to give back to the communities that have given so much to me. Over the past few years Melissa and I have lent our support to a number of great organizations. However, we wanted to make an even bigger impact by starting a foundation focused on changing the lives of children in need.”

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The couple started the Foundation in February 2010.

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Thursday’s event kicks off when celebrity team captains tee it up at the Wailea Golf Club Emerald Course, for a shotgun scramble format tournament, starting at 11:30 a.m. Lunch and beverages are provided throughout the day and each golfer  receives a special gift bag. Later in the evening, participants will be at the Four Seasons Resort Maui for a 6 p.m. cocktail reception, followed by a 7:15 p.m. dinner. A silent and live auction on exotic getaways, sports memorabilia and other one-of-a-kind items will follow dinner. The evening is capped off with an awards ceremony, led by returning emcee Neil Everett of ESPN SportsCenter.

Shane and Melissa Victorino pose with their three children, from left, Kali’a, Keenan and Kingston at last year’s celebrity golf tournament on Maui. Photo courtesy of the Shane Victorino Foundation.

Scheduled to join Shane on the course this year are: Dayton Alexander (Oakland A’s organization), Josh Beckett (Los Angeles Dodgers), Quintin Berry (Detroit Tigers), Clay Bucholtz (Boston Red Sox), Kevin Correia (Pittsburgh Pirates), Neil Everett (ESPN), Stephen Fife (Los Angeles Dodgers organization), Ben Francisco (Tampa Bay Rays), Steve Garvey (retired Dodgers star), Adam Jones (Baltimore Orioles), Kila Ka’aihue (Oakland A’s organization), Kanoa Leahey (KHON2), Brandon League (Los Angeles Dodgers), Rob Machado (professional surfer), Pete Mackanin (New York Yankees Scout), Shayna Miyajima (professional golfer), Laynce Nix (Philadelphia Phillies), Pat O’Connell (Surfing Hall of Fame), Rob Riggle (actor/comedian), Mark Rolfing (NBC Golf Analyst), Jimmy Rollins (Philadelphia Phillies), Kelly Slater (professional surfer), Tim Stauffer (San Diego Padres), Kanekoa Texeira (Cincinnati Reds organization), Jason Vargas (Seattle Mariners), Ross Williams (professional surfer), and Chef Alan Wong.

Shane Victorino and celebrities pose for a group photo after last year’s event. Photo courtesy of the Shane Victorino Foundation.

Proceeds from the event will benefit local youth programs including After-School All-Stars Hawaii (provides free, comprehensive after school programs for middle school students), A Keiki’s Dream (grants dreams of children in crisis), Adult Friends for Youth (promotes educational achievement and aims to reduce poverty and destructive behavior among high risk youth), and the Shane Victorino Youth Baseball Clinic (to provide opportunities for Maui youth to learn baseball fundamentals from Shane Victorino, MLB players and Maui high school coaches).

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In addition, the Foundation helps to provide funding improvements to a public park in Waipio and a tuition assistance fund for students with financial need at St. Anthony Jr-Sr High School, where Victorino graduated in 1999.

Over the short life of the Foundation, Shane and Melissa have managed to raise more than $500,000 for Hawaii charities.

The Foundation pledged nearly $1 million to renovate the 105-year- old Nicetown Boys & Girls Club, located in an impoverished area of Philadelphia. The Club reopened as “The Shane Victorino Nicetown Boys & Girls Club” in September 2011.

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Shane and Melissa Victorino at the 2012 All-Star Celebrity Fashion Show in Philadelphia, Pa. Photo courtesy of the Shane Victorino Foundation.

Known as the “Flyin’ Hawaiian,” Shane was born in Maui, Hawaii and recently finished his ninth MLB season with the Los Angeles Dodgers, after a late season trade from the Philadelphia Phillies. In 2008, he helped the Phillies clinch the World Series Championship, their first in nearly 30 years. In 2009, the Phillies won the National League Championship and Shane was named the 33rd member of the National League’s All-Star team; the first Hawaiian-born positional player to be named to an All-Star team. In 2010, Shane was awarded the Rawlings’ Gold Glove for the third consecutive year. The following year, he earned the Final Vote to the 2011 NL All-Star team, as voted by the fans and was named the NLE Champion Phillies’ MVP by the Philadelphia Baseball Sportswriters. During the 2012 season, Victorino recorded his 1,000th hit and set a career record in stolen bases.

To honor his commitment to charity, Shane received the Branch Rickey Award in 2011 and was inducted as the 20th member of the Baseball Humanitarian Hall of Fame. Earlier that year, he was awarded the Humanitarian of the Year by the Philadelphia Sports Writers Association. In 2010, Victorino earned The Phillies Community Service Award and was selected as the team’s nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award. Additionally, he received the Lou Gehrig Memorial Award in 2008 for best exemplifying the character and integrity, both on and off the field, of the MLB Hall of Famer. Prior to the starting the Foundation, Shane and Melissa have been active in philanthropy; raising funds for children’s cancer charities, hosting a shoe giveaway for kids, visiting children’s hospitals, and participating in Shane’s teammate’s charitable events.

Shane currently underwrites the general operating expenses for the Foundation, so that more of the funds raised can go to benefit underserved children.

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