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SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Liz McMillan, Kevin Jackson, Peter Silva, Greg Wind, Glenn Rossman

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Alabama's Beaches to Welcome Legendary Coaches and Players for SEC BeachFest in August

Kick Off the 2013 College Football Season With 10 Former Coaches, Such as Gene Stallings, Pat Dye and Phillip Fulmer and Nine Former Players Like Matt Jones, Jake Gibbs and Bucky Richardson at This Family-Oriented Destination From Aug. 15-18

GULF SHORES, AL and ORANGE BEACH, AL--(Marketwired - June 25, 2013) -  Alabama's beach towns will soon welcome thousands of football fans to the area to celebrate the decorated history of the South's favorite "pastime" -- Southeastern Conference (SEC) football. Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism (GSOBT), an official corporate sponsor of the SEC, is set to host the second SEC BeachFest from Aug. 15-18 (Thursday through Sunday). From a golf scramble and fishing tournaments to the FanZone Fueled by BP, beach concerts and appearances by Legendary Coaches and Players, the festival has something for each member of the family to explore throughout the weekend.

"SEC BeachFest gives us the distinct opportunity to welcome fans to our beautiful beaches and kick off the always highly anticipated SEC football season," said Herb Malone, president and CEO of GSOBT. "We are honored to be the beach destination where SEC fans come to play, and we're thrilled to give fans a variety of activities to look forward to during their visit."

Festival offerings include the following details:

Legendary Coaches and Players will grace BeachFest throughout the weekend. The Legends Pavilion sponsored by Comcast will feature an ongoing program of talk show-type interviews with the Legends. Legendary Coaches include Gene Stallings (Alabama), Pat Dye (Auburn), Vince Dooley (Georgia), Bill Curry (Kentucky), Jerry Stovall (LSU), Billy Brewer (Ole Miss), Houston Nutt (Ole Miss and Arkansas), Phillip Fulmer (Tennessee), R.C. Slocum (Texas A&M) and Bobby Johnson (Vanderbilt). Legendary Players include Roger Schultz (Alabama), Matt Jones (Arkansas), Ben Leard (Auburn), Chris Doering (Florida), David Greene (Georgia), Howard Schnellenberger (Kentucky), Jake Gibbs (Ole Miss), Inky Johnson (Tennessee) and Bucky Richardson (Texas A&M).

Fans are invited to check out the FanZone Fueled by BP beginning Friday, which will include interactive games, cheerleading and football clinics and much more.

Golfers are encouraged to tee off for the golf scramble on Friday for a shotgun start at 8:30 a.m. Foursomes cost $1,200 which includes three rounds of golf (and the championship round for those that advance), complimentary breakfast and lunch buffets, tickets to BeachFest, a VIP party on Thursday, a goody bag and a chance to meet Legendary Coaches. The tournament will take place at Craft Farms, Peninsula Golf & Racquet Club and Gulf Shores Golf Club with the championship round on Saturday at Kiva Dunes.

SEC alumni are invited to celebrate their school of choice at alumni happy hours on Friday from 5 to 8 p.m. at area restaurants. Alumni from Auburn University will head to Compleat Angler while alumni from the University of Alabama will head to LuLu's. Baumhower's will host the SEC East, and Cobalt will host the rest of the SEC West schools.

Anglers can wet a line for the SEC BeachFest Fishing Challenge on Saturday at 7 a.m. for $200 per angler. A special boat sponsorship option for $2,000 puts avid SEC fans in a fishing boat with four of their friends plus the Legendary Coach or Player from their school. Boat sponsorships are granted on a first come, first serve basis and are limited by the availability of Legendary talent. All participating anglers may attend the weigh-in party featuring free food and drinks, live music and meet and greets with the Legends at Wolf Bay Lodge from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The 5K and one-mile fun run will begin at The Hangout on Saturday at 8 a.m. (fun run begins at 9 a.m.) and end at the same location for a waffle breakfast. Participants are asked to show their school spirit and wear their favorite teams' colors. Guests running the 5K will be charged $35 which includes a weekend pass if registration is received by July 26 ($40 by Aug. 16 and $50 on race day). The one-mile fun run is limited to students ages 18 and younger. One-mile fun run participants will be charged $15 which includes a weekend pass if registration is received by Aug. 16 ($20 on race day). The first 700 race entrants will receive a free race shirt.

Children ages 15 and younger are invited to participate in the free kids' pier fishing tournament at the Gulf State Park Pier on Sunday from 9 to 11 a.m. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

Music lovers can enjoy concerts on the beach featuring headlining country star Rodney Atkins on Saturday night with Marc Broussard taking the stage on Friday night with his unique blend of classic R&B, rock and soul music. Performances will take place at 8 p.m. on the Gulf Shores Main Public Beach.

General weekend passes to BeachFest are $25 and VIP tickets are $199. VIP tickets include a meet and greet with special guests, an open bar, meal periods, snacks as well as an air-conditioned area with executive bathrooms. Children ages 10 and younger will be admitted free with a ticketed adult (one child per adult) and will only be admitted into the VIP area with a VIP-ticketed adult. Note that the SEC BeachFest schedule of events is subject to change.

For more information about SEC BeachFest, special sponsor offers, tickets or to sign up for the golf and fishing tournaments or 5K, visit www.secbeachfest.com. For more information on this family beach destination, visit www.gulfshores.com or www.orangebeach.com.

Media credentials for 2013 SEC BeachFest: To apply for media passes, complete the form at http://secbeachfest.com/mediapress prior to the Aug. 1 deadline.

Download photo: http://bit.ly/1778BUu
Photo caption: Fans check out the FanZone Fueled by BP at the 2012 SEC BeachFest. SEC fans are encouraged to attend this year's event featuring Legendary Coaches and Players, a new fishing tournament and more from Aug. 15-18 in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, Ala.
Photo credit: Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism

About Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism:
Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism serves as the official destination marketing organization for the cities of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach in addition to the unincorporated area of Fort Morgan. To learn more about Alabama's 32 miles of sugar white sand, visit either www.gulfshores.com or www.orangebeach.com. This convention and visitors bureau is an accredited Destination Marketing Organization (2012-2016) and is an official corporate sponsor of the Southeastern Conference (SEC).

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