All appointments for the Spirit of America 800 are now filled. MIS, the Great Lakes Region of the American Red Cross and the NASCAR Foundation all appreciate your support of this year's event.
What began back in 2002 as a small blood drive to support victims of 9-11, the Spirit of America blood drive, held each year on Sept. 11 at Michigan International Speedway, has grown into a 25-track effort with support of the NASCAR Foundation.
This year's NASCAR Foundation Blood & Marrow drive will take place at various tracks throughout the country with the idea of receiving thousands of donations that day. It's an event that began back in the Irish Hills of Michigan.
"I can't tell you how pleased I am that the Spirit of America blood drive has led to the tremendous undertaking by the NASCAR Foundation to help in this effort," MIS Director of Guest Services Tim Booth said. "We should receive thousands of donations for this drive, which will be a wonderful help to the American Red Cross. It will be truly a special day."
The Spirit of America 800 blood drive will take place at MIS on Sept. 11, 2007 and if last year's event was any indication on how this year's will be, the drive will be the biggest and best yet. If you have ever been interested in giving blood to support the American Red Cross, take advantage of the opportunity to sign up for the Spirit of America blood drive by calling 1-800-YOU-GAVE or register online at www.SpiritofAmerica800.com.
Now in its sixth year, the "Spirit of America," one of the nation's largest 9-11 blood drives, collected 789 units of blood over a 12-hour period in 2006. Because of its accomplishments, blood drive organizers have once again raised the stakes by announcing a goal of 800 units collected for the 2007 event, thus renaming it the "Spirit of America 800."
"Renaming the blood drive the Spirit of America 800 is a testament of how successful this event has become," Booth said. "Race fans and customers of Michigan International Speedway have really come together and supported this drive since 2002. It’s a great day with special people taking time out of busy schedules to make a difference."
Following the renewal period (which ended on July 15), 850 appointments have been scheduled for the drive with 200 appointments still available.
“Last year’s Spirit of America blood drive was our biggest and most successful yet,” Sharon Jaksa, CEO of the American Red Cross Great Lakes Region Blood Services said. “We are continuing to raise the bar each year and I’m confident we can achieve our goal of 800 units in 2007. The tremendous support we receive from Michigan International Speedway, volunteers, blood donors and the community, help us collect hundreds of units of blood that will save thousands of lives.”
The NASCAR Foundation Blood & Marrow drive, which partnered with the Jimmie Johnson Foundation and Hendrick Marrow Program in 2006, attracted many donors including NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson.
“My work with the American Red Cross has shown me the importance of blood donations,” said Johnson, driver of No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet. “The NASCAR Foundation Blood and Marrow Drive is a great way to build awareness within the NASCAR family, and I encourage fans everywhere to get involved and participate.”
This year, the NASCAR Foundation Blood and Marrow Drive is even bigger with drives currently scheduled at Atlanta Motor Speedway, Bristol Motor Speedway, California Speedway, Chicagoland Speedway, Darlington Raceway, Daytona International Speedway, Dover International Speedway, Elko Speedway (MN), Homestead-Miami Speedway, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Infineon Raceway, Kansas Speedway, Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Lowe’s Motor Speedway, Martinsville Speedway, Michigan International Speedway, Monadnock Speedway, New Hampshire International Speedway, Phoenix International Raceway, Pocono Raceway, Richmond International Raceway, Rockford Speedway, Talladega
Superspeedway, Texas Motor Speedway and Watkins Glen International.
Currently one of the largest 9-11 blood drive in the nation and largest single-day blood drive in Michigan, the Spirit of America 800 has collected more than 2,778 units of blood, enough to help save the lives of over 8,300 people. With each unit of blood having the potential to be transfused to up to three people, this year’s blood drive could benefit nearly 2,400 individuals.
The Great Lakes Region of the American Red Cross collects blood from volunteer donors in 65 Michigan counties and helps provides blood products to patients in 129 hospitals statewide. In the past 12 months, the American Red Cross has experienced frequent and severe blood shortages. Supplies of critical blood types have been as low as six hours but rarely higher than two days. The Red Cross considers a three-day supply of all blood types to be safe and adequate for meeting emergency and ongoing medical needs.
Sponsors of the sixth annual Spirit of America 800 include: AAA, Addison Graphic Solutions, Advance America, Americrown, Brooklyn-Irish Hills Chamber of Commerce, C&L Sanitation, DDM Marketing & Communications, Defined Wellness Center, digineer, FOX 47, Hendrick Marrow Program, Indy Racing League, Jimmie Johnson Foundation, Kodak, NASCAR Foundation, National Marrow Donor Program, OSB Community Bank, Pepsi, Richard Petty Driving Experience, Stone City Productions, Walton Agency and WinCraft Racing.