Atlanta, GA -- After playing 16 seasons in the WNBA, Indiana Fever's superstar player, Tamika Catchings, will bring her career to a close this season, while carrying out her 12-city Legacy Tour accompanied by her Catch the Stars Foundation.
Celebrating the 20th anniversary this year of WNBA Basketball, Catchings does not want the focus to be on her, but on the organization. She does not want the WNBA to have to make the decision of honoring her or the 20th year.
"I don't want to be honored before or after the game, so we came up with the idea of doing the Legacy Tour, which will benefit my foundation," said Catchings.
"I didn't want to go into a city and be like, ‘Hey, we're going to raise money for Catch The Stars', and then I retire, and nothing else happens, so we came up with the tour idea from the standpoint of being able to give money back to a team or a player that was involved on that team."
With intentions of leaving in an impactful way, Catchings will be hosting a fundraising party after each of the 12 WNBA city games she will play in and will grant $2,000 to a local community partner that promotes fitness, literacy, and mentoring. Catchings will start her tour against the Atlanta Dream May 29th, where she plans on giving the first grant to the Dream Foundation.
Catchings' overall goal is to reach a total of $24,000 across the cities she plays at and to raise $100,000 to support the foundation's objectives that include expanded programming into 11 new cities in 2017.
She also plans on hosting a basketball camp, along with the Atlanta Dream team in 2017.
"I just wanted to do something more impactful. And that will be able to not focus on so much of what we do on the court, but more so of what we do in the community," said Catchings.
Like the number of her jersey, the cost for fans and corporate partners to attend each of the Catchings' Legacy parties is $24, and the first 75 registrants will receive a Catchings Legacy Tour t-shirt. Fans can register to attend at CatchTheStars.org.
She will interact with fans and sign autographs, while auctioning off the shoes she wore during the game that night.
"We thought it would be a cool way to get the fans more engaged. NikeId will release them the same day and Catch the Stars will release them to the media so everyone will have pictures of them 24 hours prior to game time," says Catchings.
She already had fans involved with this legacy tour, as the 12 shoes, she will play in, were created by fans who participated in the Tamika Catchings Legacy Tour Shoe Design Contest.
"I'm excited about how this could be a good year, and not on retirement down the road," says Catchings. This season she is more focused on passing the torch to her teammates and helping them grow during this surreal time, while trying hard not to do everything.
Tamika Catchings 2016 Legacy Tour Schedule
Sunday, May 29 at Atlanta (3:00 p.m.)
Friday, June 3 at New York (7:30 p.m.)
Tuesday, June 14 at Minnesota (7:00 p.m.)
Friday, June 17 at San Antonio (7:00 p.m.)
Saturday, June 25 at Dallas (7:30 p.m.)
Wednesday, June 29 at Chicago (12:30 p.m.)
Wednesday, July 6 at Los Angeles (7:30 p.m.)
Friday, July 8 at Phoenix (7:00 p.m.)
Sunday, July 10 at Seattle (4:00 p.m.)
Saturday, August 27 at Indiana (7:00 p.m.)
Sunday, September 11 at Washington (4:00 p.m.)
Tuesday, September 13 at Connecticut (7:00 p.m.)