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Friday, April 15, 2005
Title sponsor did not renew its deal

Associated Press

BOULDER, Colo. -- This year's John Elway Celebrity Classic golf tournament has been canceled for lack of a sponsor after a five-year run that included stars such as Michael Jordan and Charles Barkley.

Tournament director Dennis Engel said Thursday that Sun Microsystems, the title sponsor since the event debuted in Broomfield in 2000, did not renew its deal. The Classic had been tentatively scheduled for July 7-10 at the Omni Interlocken Golf Club.

"We need to have a title sponsor to have the tournament," said Kathy Hatch, Elway's executive assistant.

The Elway Classic had a purse of $275,000 last year. Asked if the event will be held again, Engel said: "You never want to say never, but at the same time I don't want to give false hope either."

The tournament became part of the Celebrity Players Tour in 2000. It has mostly benefited organizations that deal with prevention and treatment of child abuse. Engel said $7 million has been raised by Elway tournaments since 1987, including about $3.2 million over the five years of the Elway Celebrity Classic.

There are 13 active tournaments on the celebrity golf tour.