History of The Uncle Jesse’s Big Mouth, Big Bass Classic

First held in 1988, the "Uncle Jesse’s Big Mouth Big Bass Classic" has become an annual event each spring for Paris and Lamar County. The tournament attracts 350-400 anglers and hundreds of fans and spectators. The tournament is held at Pat Mayse Lake with the assistance and cooperation of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Also, many area businesses and volunteers help make this a real angler’s event and a fun day foe the fans and spectators.

Denver "Uncle Jesse" Pyle of the Dukes of Hazard has been on hand for each of the previous tournaments shaking hands, signing autographs, hugging kids and helping in every way, until his death in 1998. He, along with his lovely wife, Tippi, never asked, nor received reimbursement for their participation. Denver’s one request was that all net proceeds from the tournament go directly to benefit children of the county with special needs.

Tournament proceeds are handled through Denver Pyle’s Children’s Charities, a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization. A local board of directors committed to see that funds benefit children, not administrative costs, administer funds.

Some of the benefactors of funding over the past years are as follows:

SPECIAL OLYMPICS: $53, 800 used to purchase uniforms, travel to meets and expenses and awards for local Special Olympics meets.

BOYS CLUB OF PARIS: $28,000 for a new roof for the club building, new floor for the basketball court, computers and programs for an after school tutorial program.

SHOES FOR CHILDREN: $15,700 purchased over 650 pairs of shoes for children at Christmastime.

BIG BROTHERS/BIG SISTERS OF LAMAR COUNTY: $7,975 special funding for special projects.

POLICE ATHLETIC LEAGUE: $12,380 for the purchase of uniforms, equipment and supplies that serves over 400 youth in Lamar County.

MISCELLANEOUS GIFTS: $6,250 in scholarships for boys and girls to attend scout camps and special needs for individual children.

The Charities’ Board carefully studies each funding request to insure that objectives of the Foundation are being followed.


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