SOURCE: Notah Begay III Foundation

July 17, 2008 08:00 ET

Four-Time PGA Tour Winner Notah Begay III Hosts Inaugural Golf Tournament With Cink, Singh, Weir and Villegas to Benefit Native American Youth

Begay, Oneida Indian Nation and San Manuel Band of Serrano Mission Indians Join Forces to Raise Awareness of and Support for Youth Sports Programs Within Native American Communities

ONEIDA INDIAN NATION, NY--(Marketwire - July 17, 2008) - Notah Begay III, four-time PGA TOUR winner, proudly announces a first-of-its-kind golf tournament to raise awareness and funding for the improved health and wellness of Native American youth on Indian reservations nationwide. The Notah Begay III Foundation Challenge (NB3 Challenge) was conceptualized by Notah with the goal of educating the American public on the strong need within Indian communities to help children improve their lives through sport.

The event will be made possible by two Indian nations -- Oneida Indian Nation of New York and San Manuel Band of Serrano Mission Indians of California -- demonstrating the collaboration of tribes in donating time and resources to this important cause. The tournament further presents an opportunity to showcase the significant strides Indian nations have made in recent years to create a more promising future for their youth and their communities as a whole.

"The Oneida people are proud to join with Notah Begay III in this exciting initiative," said Ray Halbritter, Oneida Indian Nation Representative and CEO. "Native leaders recognize the importance of providing lasting hope and unique opportunities for the seventh generation. That is why the Oneida Nation has invested in the future by becoming a founding partner of Notah's Foundation Challenge."

The Notah Begay III Foundation was established in 2005 to create sustainable programs that are designed by Native Americans for Native American youth. The NB3 Challenge will serve as the Foundation's first national event and will be held August 26, 2008, at Atunyote Golf Club at the Turning Stone Resort, an economic enterprise of the Oneida Indian Nation. World-class PGA TOUR players Stewart Cink, Vijay Singh, Mike Weir, Camilo Villegas and Notah Begay III -- with more than 75 combined professional career wins between them -- will play in a skins game format whereby all proceeds benefit the Foundation.

"I am humbled to have such outstanding golfers join me at the inaugural tournament, as their support to bring national attention to the issues facing Native children and to raise funds for our youth sport programs truly speaks volumes," said Notah Begay III. "This event was made possible by the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians and the Oneida Indian Nation and the tribes' willingness to work together shows how dedicated they are to improving both their own communities and Native communities all over. It's through powerful partnerships such as these that together we can positively impact the future of our Native American youth."

The goal of the Foundation is that the youth sport programs are sustainable and will run strong for generations to come. To date, the Foundation has partnered with the Tohajiilee High School, a Navajo Nation community, to deliver sound golf curricula to a number of children. Since its inception, the program has seen considerable improvement in both participation and performance and remains true to the game's spirit by implementing sportsmanship, integrity and respect as its guidelines. In addition to golf, soccer programs have been a huge success, and have grown to include approximately 150 Native American youth in New Mexico alone, each of whom participate on one of 16 different teams for a 10-game season.

"The decision to be a founding sponsor was very simple, because the outcome of this initiative will directly affect the future of our children," said Chairman James Ramos, San Manuel Band of Serrano Mission Indians. "The success of the youth sport programs with the Notah Begay III Foundation is apparent, which compelled us to participate in the Challenge and to help extend the opportunities to other Native American communities."

For information on supporting the Notah Begay III Foundation, or to contribute to the NB3 Challenge, visit: www.nb3challenge.com.

About Notah Begay III Foundation

The Notah Begay III Foundation is a federally recognized 501(c)3 non-profit organization that was started by PGA TOUR golfer and Stanford University graduate, Notah Begay III in 2005. The mission of the Foundation is to deliver sustainable, health and wellness youth sports programs in Native American communities in the form of soccer and golf programs. The Foundation strives to be a catalyst for monumental change in Indian Country with three goals including:

--  Get Native youth up and active to prevent the future spread of
    diabetes
--  Offer programming designed by Native Americans for Native American
    Youth
--  Positively impact the Native American culture
    

For more information on Notah Begay III and the Foundation, visit: www.notah.com.

About Turning Stone Resort & Casino in Oneida, New York

The Oneida Indian Nation's Turning Stone Resort and Casino has evolved into the premier golf destination in the Northeast. Three preeminent golf course architects -- Tom Fazio, Robert Trent Jones Jr. and Rick Smith -- have each crafted masterpieces at Turning Stone. In addition to the three 18-hole layouts, the resort's ensemble includes two nine-hole courses and a training facility.

The Atunyote Golf Club, designed by Fazio, is the host site of Turning Stone Resort Championship, September 29 - October 5, 2008, which is the only regularly-scheduled PGA TOUR event on American Indian lands. Visit: www.turningstone.com for more information.

About the Oneida Indian Nation

The Oneida Indian Nation is a federally recognized Indian nation in Central New York. It is a member of the Haudenosaunee (hoe-dee-no-so-nee), known in English as the Six Nations or Iroquois Confederacy. The Oneida Nation is composed of approximately 1,000 enrolled Members, about half of whom live in central New York. The Nation operates a variety of businesses to fund its government programs including golf, hotel, casino, media and more, creating tremendous economic impact on the region. Proceeds from the Nation's enterprises fund essential services for Members including health, housing, education and infrastructure improvements. The success of their enterprises also allows the Nation's government to become economically self-sufficient. In 1999, the Oneida Nation became the first Indian government in the country to return federal funding to the Bureau of Indian Affairs. Visit: www.oneidanation.net for more information.

About San Manuel Band of Serrano Mission Indians

The San Manuel Band of Serrano Mission Indians is a federally recognized American Indian tribe located near Highland, Calif. The Serrano Indians are the indigenous people of the San Bernardino highlands, passes, valleys and mountains who share a common language and culture. The San Manuel reservation was established in 1891 and recognized as a sovereign nation with the right of self-government. Since time immemorial, the San Manuel tribal community has endured change and hardship. Amidst these challenges the tribe continued to maintain its unique form of governance. Like other governments it seeks to provide a better quality of life for its citizens by building infrastructure, maintaining civil services and promoting social, economic and cultural development. Today San Manuel tribal government oversees many governmental units including the departments of fire, public safety, education and environment. Visit: www.sanmanuel-nsn.gov for more information on the tribe.

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