LAKEWOOD RANCH -- Armand Assante is returning to Manatee County to hit the links for charity.
The Emmy Award-winning actor will bring star power to the 16th annual Phil Galvano Golf Classic that raises funds for Manatee County's public schools through the Manatee Education Foundation.
This year's tournament will be held May 18 at the Legacy Golf Club at Lakewood Ranch.
Sponsorships are available at the $15,000, $10,000 and $2,500 levels.
The $15,000 "Eagle sponsors" will be able to enjoy lunch with Assante and a round of golf with Bill Galvano, a former member of the Florida House of Representatives, on May 17 at the Longboat Key Club and Resort.
"We're very happy to have Mr. Assante involved and elevate the fundraising for the event this year," said Tricia McKay Powers, director of
development at the Manatee Education Foundation. "He's bringing national exposure to this fiscal crisis."
Assante won an Emmy for playing the titular mafia boss in the HBO movie "Gotti."
He shared the screen with Demi Moore in "Striptease," battled Sylvester Stallone in "Judge Dredd" and more recently appeared in the acclaimed Denzel Washington/Russell Crowe drama "American Gangster."
Assante sat down with the Bradenton Herald in December while in Lakewood Ranch to film "Blind Pass," the second independent, feature-length film by Sarasota-based Midnight Pass Productions and writer/producer/director Steve Tatone.
"I think this could be an incredible film area," Assante said of Manatee County.
Wade Tatangelo, features writer/columnist, can be reached at 941-745-7057. Follow Twitter.com/wtatangelo.