Spirit of America blood drive returns on 9-11

Spirit of America

Michigan International Speedway is pleased to announce it will continue its tradition of the Spirit of America blood drive on Wednesday, September 11.

The annual blood drive at the racetrack began as a tribute in 2002 in honor of the victims and heroes of 9-11. Since its inception in 2002, the Spirit of America blood drive has collected more than 8,876 pints of blood, positively affecting more than 26,688 lives.

MIS is partnering with Michigan Blood, a nonprofit, community service organization founded in 1955, to host the blood drive and Be the Match® Registry drive.

The Spirit of America has evolved into more than just a blood drive. It’s an event and a time of reflection – all taking place at Michigan International Speedway.

Those who attempt to donate will have the opportunity to travel by MIS tram around the track, through the tunnel to the pit, and into MIS’s Home of the Brave, a 4000 square foot multi-media exhibit featuring ‘as it happened videos,’ Presidential letters, magazines and newspapers, and additional tributes. Donors will also be treated to a lunch by CP Federal Credit Union in the Champions Club overlooking the track.

To participate in the commemorative tribute and behind the scenes MIS experience, donors must have an appointment.  Appointments are limited to 600 guests between 7 am – 3 pm and can be made online through the MI Blood website  or the Spirit of America website, www.SpiritOfAmericaBloodDrive.com.  Appointments are also available by calling 1-866-miblood (642-5663).  New donors are welcome.  Donors may bring one non-donating person with them.

“Michigan Blood is honored to partner with the Michigan International Speedway for the 2013 Spirit of America Blood Drive. This is an incredible event which reinforces and demonstrates a spirit of selflessness, compassion and patriotism while paying tribute to the victims and heroes of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. We respect the history of this event and are excited to continue the blood drive,” Bill Rietscha, president and CEO, Michigan Blood.

“The Spirit of America is one of the most incredible events we will host all year,” said Roger Curtis, track president. “It has evolved out of a simple need to want to do something for 9-11 into a meaningful, heartfelt and truly good thing to do with our community. We are thrilled Michigan Blood has come on board to help us with this worthwhile and wonderful event.”

This year, in addition to lunch, the track tour, and Heroes Hall experience, all donors will receive a Spirit of America gift bag, pin, t-shirt and commemorative item.  During lunch, donors can also learn more about and join the National Marrow Donor Program’s Be the Match® Registry affiliated with Michigan Blood, and the Gift of Life Organ Donation Program.

At the conclusion of the tour, donors will get an up-close view of more than 3,000 American flags proudly displayed at Unity Field to honor the victims of 9-11. The flags, each representing victims of the 9-11 attacks, are placed in the speedway’s Lot 10 by veterans from local American Legion chapters.

Anyone may come to Unity Field. Only blood donors with scheduled appointments will receive the track and museum tours, gift bag and lunch.

To donate, you must be 17 years old (16 with written parent’s/guardian’s consent), weigh at least 110 pounds and pass the health screening.  You also may not have donated whole blood within the past 56 days of attempting to donate. Blood donors should bring photo ID (or two forms of non-photo ID). For additional information on donating blood, check out www.miblood.org.

© 2014 Michigan International Speedway

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