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Forum staff reports, Published June 19 2008

Costas cancels Maris appearance in Fargo

Bob Costas won’t be at the Roger Maris Celebrity Benefit Golf Tournament, canceling his weekend appearance late this afternoon.

Costas was scheduled to be the master of ceremonies for Sunday’s banquet at the Fargo Holiday Inn. A scheduling conflict forced Costas to withdraw, according to Maris spokesman Steve Carlson.

“We’re disappointed this happened, and when we have a celebrity of his status, this can happen,” Carlson said. “We’re disappointed, but not surprised because of his busy schedule. It’s unfortunate.”

Carlson said NBC has scheduled the Emmy Award-winning sportscaster and author for a recording Sunday in preparation for the network’s Olympic coverage.

“We’re not ready to announce yet any replacement for the banquet,” Carlson added.

Costas was scheduled to emcee the banquet last year before he was forced to cancel due to another scheduling conflict.

A Maris portrait will be unveiled at 3 p.m. Friday by the Maris family at Edgewood Golf Course to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the tournament, which kicks off Saturday with a charity auction at Holiday Inn.

The auction helped raise a record $100,000 for tournament beneficiaries last year.

Earlier this week, tournament organizers said nearly 500 golfers have registered for the sellout tournament.