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Fishing tournament to benefit local charity; Goes to Ronald McDonald House

By Staff | Sep 4, 2008

A special fishing tournament is coming to Cape Harbour on Saturday to benefit the Lee County Ronald McDonald House.

The McFlat’s Invitational, a snook and redfish tournament, will start at 7:30 a.m. and conclude with a dinner banquet and awards ceremony later that evening.

All proceeds raised from the event will benefit Ronald McDonald House Charities, including a mobile dental clinic and a new scholarship program starting next year.

“We’re going to be giving financial assistance to 13 college-bound seniors who live in the five-county area,” said Deb Newman, executive director of the Ronald McDonald House. “The program was put in motion about six months ago.”

Now in its fourth year, Newman called the fishing tournament a “huge success,” one that is chaired by local McDonald’s operators Tim and Fred Frederic and Mitch Williamson from ScreenprintPlus.com.

“It’s a true community effort,” Newman said. “The main thing about the tournament is it’s chaired by a local McDonald’s owner-operator, and a former family who stayed here.”

Tim Frederic released the following statement regarding the event:

“The 4th Annual McFlat’s snook and redfish fishing tournament is a great time on the water as well as an event that truly helps our local children. We take great pride in raising thousands of dollars to benefit Ronald McDonald House Charities of Southwest Florida. My co-chair, Mitch Williamson, had a child utilize the house and this is our way of thanking those individuals that helped his family as well as supporting future families in need. Our goal this year is to raise over $35,000 for this wonderful charity.”

The Ronald McDonald House is a place where the parents of children who are in a nearby hospital can stay at night for reduced or no cost.

Newman said the Lee County house primarily assists families of infants who are born prematurely. It can accommodate up to six families at a time, with tentative plans to expand sometime in the future.

“We’re located so close to the hospital, families can spend a lot more time with their child, which is essential,” Newman said.

According to Newman, fund-raising opportunities like the fishing tournament are crucial to the future of the Ronald Mcdonald House. Given the difficult economic times, the level of support from the community has been especially touching to Newman.

“In these down economic times the loyalty and level of support from the community has really been amazing,” Newman said. “We’re very happy to have the support of Cape Coral, and Cape Harbour for lending their facilities.”

A kids fishing tournament and fishing camp will also be part of the festivities, with Ronald McDonald on hand to cheer the kids and have lunch with the young anglers.

For more information, visit: www.mcflatsinvitational.com.