Darlington Raceway to Host Annual Blood Drive | Events
Fans who are looking for a way to honor the tragedies of 9-11 can take advantage of the opportunity to give blood during Darlington Raceway’s 7th annual Blood Drive, scheduled for Tuesday, Sept. 11.
The event, which will take place from 8:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. on Sept. 11, is now accepting appointments in advance by going to www.redcrossblood.org, clicking on the ‘Make a Blood Donation Appointment’ link and entering the sponsor code: darlingtonraceway; or by calling 1-800-REDCROSS. Appointments are encouraged in advance to ensure participation in the blood drive.
The American Red Cross has an emergency need for blood donations of all types, as blood donations nationwide have reached their lowest levels in 15 years. Due to a mid-week Fourth of July holiday, fewer businesses were able to host blood drives; severe summer storms in the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic the first two weeks of the month forced the cancellation of dozens of blood drives; and locally, extreme heat is keeping many donors at home and away from Red Cross blood drives and donation centers.
“We had numerous fans and community members participate in our 2011 event and we want to continue to see more successful growth of the Pee Dee’s largest single-day blood collection event,” Darlington Raceway President Chris Browning said. “It only takes the generosity of a few people each giving one unit of blood to potentially save hundreds maybe thousands of lives in our area. It truly is a positive way to honor the tragedies of 9-11 in our local community.”
"We are grateful to Darlington Raceway for the opportunity to once again team up for their annual blood drive, and we encourage community members to give the gift of life in remembrance of the lives lost on Sept. 11, 2001," said Julie Weilacher, interim CEO of the American Red Cross South Carolina Blood Services Region. "Donating blood is a meaningful way to make a positive impact on the lives of our hospital patients."
For each donation, fans will get a behind-the-scenes look at the Lady in Black, which includes an opportunity to take their vehicle for laps around the Darlington oval, as well as an American Red Cross gift bag. Free food and beverages will be provided for donors courtesy of Bojangles’.
It’s important to remember that one unit of donated blood can be transfused up to three people. The 2011 event collected 143 units of blood, thus potentially saving the lives of 429 people.
The American Red Cross S.C. Blood Services Region provides lifesaving blood to 54 hospitals and must have 500 people give blood and platelets each weekday to meet hospital demand. Accident victims as well as patients with cancer, sickle cell disease, blood disorders and other illnesses receive lifesaving transfusions every day. There is no substitute for blood and volunteer donors are the only source.
Blood can be safely donated every 56 days. Platelets can be given safely every two weeks, up to 24 times a year. Most healthy people age 17 and older, 16 with parental consent, who weigh at least 110 pounds, are eligible to donate blood and platelets. Donors who are 18 and younger must also meet specific height and weight requirements.