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Morris to speak at Pool & Spa Expo

Subject of Disney's "The Rookie"

Motivational speaker and former Major League pitcher, Jim "The Rookie" Morris, will provide the keynote address during the 2005 International Pool & Spa Expo/Backyard Living Expo, Nov. 1-3 in Orlando, Fla.

His keynote address, “Never Give Up on a Dream!”  will take place on Tuesday, Nov. 1, from 9:45-10:30 a.m. in the Chapin Theater at the Orange County Convention Center.
Free to show participants, the Keynote Address is the headline event for the Expo’s educational conference program, a series of 103 business and technical seminars.
Morris’ story is the subject of the blockbuster film from Walt Disney, "The Rookie," starring Dennis Quaid, which won the ESPY for Sports Film of the Year. Originally drafted in the first round in 1984, Morris’ dream of becoming a major league baseball player was derailed by a series of debilitating arm injuries. Instead, he married, raised a family and received a college degree before becoming a high school science teacher and baseball coach in West Texas. At age 35, some 11 years after retiring from minor league baseball, Morris was giving a speech to high school players about the importance of dreams and hard work. His students challenged him to pursue his own dream of pitching in the Major Leagues. Morris tried out and was immediately signed to a professional baseball contract, becoming the oldest rookie in the Major Leagues.  After pitching for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays and Los Angeles Dodgers, Morris retired from baseball in 2001.

The keynote address is sponsored by Marquis Spas. Although free to show participants, registration is required. For more information about the International Pool & Spa Expo, visit or call 972-536-6350 or 888-869-8522. For more information about the Backyard Living Expo, visit or call 972-536-6412 or 866-431-1683.

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