Sunday, January 08, 2006

All-Star linep for annual Smokey Joe Banquet

SAN MARCOS, TEXAS The stars at night will be big and bright at the All Star Baseball Night in Seguin on Saturday, Feb. 4, 2006. Five former Major League players and members of the “Black Aces” Fergie Jenkins, Vida Blue, J.R. Richard, Mudcat Grant and Al Downing, plus Negro League Star Cleveland Grant will gather at this year's “Smokey” Joe Williams Scholarship Gala event that will benefit the “Smokey” Joe Williams Memorial Fund Scholarship.

The “Black Aces” are a group of African-American ball players who have pitched 20 wins or more in a single major league season.

The “Smokey” Joe Williams Memorial Fund is a non-profit organization established to honor deserving high school athletes by rewarding them with a scholarship named after Seguin native, “Smokey” Joe Williams.

Williams played in the Negro Leagues from 1905 to 1932. His career highlights included a 1909 shutout of the Leland Giants and a 1919 no-hit victory over Cannonball Redding. In 1914 he recorded 41 wins and 3 losses. In 1952 he was recognized as the greatest pitcher in the history of the Negro Leagues. “Smokey” Joe Williams was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1999.

The gala will be held at the Seguin Guadalupe County Coliseum and will include free player autographing, a huge sports memorabilia auction, wine & cheese tasting and heavy hors d'oeuvres.

Tickets for this star-studded gala event are $25 and are available at Seguin City Hall, the Seguin Area Chamber of Commerce and KWED/Seguin Daily News. Banquet sponsorships and silent auction donations are also being accepted. For more information, please contact Mark Gretchen (830) 401-2427 or Linda Duncan (830) 401-2320.


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