Fishing event to honour APN ad director

Fishing event to honour APN ad director

APN New Zealand will hold a charity fishing competition to raise funds and awareness for men’s health and honour the memory of former New Zealand Herald group advertising director, Andrew McNally.

The inaugural APN McNally Classic will take place on Thursday, April 3, hosted by celebrity fisherman Geoff Thomas.

Mr McNally died in June 2013 of a sudden heart attack, aged 44. He had moved to New Zealand with his wife, Liza, and their three young children, in 2012 after a 20-year career with News Limited.

According to APN New Zealand CEO Martin Simons, Mr McNally made a big impact on the NZ news and advertising community.

“He was a pretty outstanding character,” Mr Simons said. “In a short time he was very well known and liked by the ad and marketing world in New Zealand.

“He really connected with the market, he worked bloody hard. The team embraced him, he recognised young talent; he was a great leader making strides in enabling the transition from newspaper to multimedia.”

The McNally Classic, the result of a partnership between Men’s Health Trust and APN Outdoor, will take a different form each year, Mr Simons said. Mr McNally was not only a fisherman but “a keen foodie, an accomplished, chef-standard cook,” he said. “We were thinking about having a steak day.”

After the angling will be a dinner planned by celebrity chef Michael Van De Elzen, as well as a prize giving and charity auction fronted by Australiasian auctioneer of the year, Daniel Coulson.

The cause is wider than just “remembering a good guy,” Mr Simons said. “It’s a catalyst to bring people together, raising money for men’s health, and reminding people that it’s important to take care of yourself in mid-life.”

He said Mr McNally was an active man. “He had a problem he wasn’t aware of,” he said.

“If we can use the competition to raise the profile of men’s health and encourage at least one person to have a health check-up, then we will consider this event a success.”

To enter, contestants can register their own boat or join an APN craft. All funds raised from entry fees and the charity auction will go to Men’s Health Trust New Zealand.

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