Larry Bird to be honored Oct. 25

Pacers president Larry Bird will be recognized as part of 13th Masquerade fund-raising event at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Hall of Famer Larry Bird will be honored Oct. 25th at The Masquerade in a Bankers Life Fieldhouse celebration that will feature the music group Sawyer Brown.

The Indiana Pacers’ president was a college Player of the Year at Indiana State, three-time NBA Most Valuable Player, three-time NBA champion with the Boston Celtics, 2000 NBA Coach of the Year and 2012 NBA Executive of the Year, the latter two distinctions with the Pacers. He will also be recognized for his many behind-the-scenes charitable endeavors, especially those impacting youth.

Bird will join previous honorees Donnie Walsh, Clark Kellogg, Bobby “Slick” Leonard, Reggie Miller, Melvin and Herb Simon, the Hulman-George family, Jeff Smulyan, Frank Hancock, Steve Stitle, Rick Fuson, Tamika Catchings, Deborah Simon and Cindy Simon Skjodt.

The 13th annual Masquerade, a popular date each fall, is the signature fundraising event of Simon Youth Foundation and Pacers Foundation and has raised nearly $8.5 million for the two organizations.

Sawyer Brown, a popular American country music band since 1981, has played more than 4,000 shows and traveled more than one million miles in three decades. The band is a six-time winner of Vocal Group of the Year and has been named Video Group of the Year three times. Their latest CD is “Travelin’ Band.”

Masquerade acknowledges the generous support of PNC Bank as the event’s title sponsor. Other major sponsors include: Melvin Simon & Associates, Pacers Sports & Entertainment, Simon Property Group, Donald P. Pipino Company, Fifth Third Bank, FSN Indiana, Ice Miller, Indianapolis Colts, Optimedia, St. Vincent Health & Hospitals, and Sport Graphics.

The reception begins at 6 p.m. with dinner and a tribute at 7 p.m. For ticket information, contact Brandi Young at (317) 263-7694 or

Simon Youth Foundation, a national non-profit organization, exists to help at-risk students who are on the verge of dropping out of high school stay in school. Through 22 Simon Youth Academies in 12 states and Simon Youth Scholarships, SYF advocates, creates and initiates educational opportunities for students so they can start here and go anywhere. In partnership with local public schools, SYF has maintained a 90 percent graduation rate at its Academies since inception, graduated more than 12,000 students, and awarded more than $12 million in scholarships. For more information, visit

The Pacers Foundation encourages Indiana’s youth to make winning life choices through contributions, scholarships and other community partnerships. For more information, visit

Phillip B. Wilson can be found on Twitter (@pwilson24), Facebook and Google+.

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