Roller Derby Blood Drives Draw Record Crowds and Roll Out Coast to Coast

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Record-setting donations at ‘Make ‘em Bleed’ roller derby blood drives in California have prompted organizers from the American Red Cross and Brown Paper Tickets to expand the series to the East Coast. Roller skate cookies, temporary tattoos and photo opportunities with athletes representing the world’s fastest-growing women’s sport are inspiring donors to help save lives.

The most popular blood drives in California, attracting enough blood donors to save more than 660 lives, Make 'em Bleed roller derby blood drive series will begin Aug. 2 and roll-out from coast to coa

...it’s a fantastic atmosphere, with roller derby athletes skating in uniform, refreshments, giveaways and an all around good time,” said Hanna Malak, representative for the American Red Cross.

Roller derby leagues from the Bay Area to Boston have partnered with Brown Paper Tickets and the American Red Cross to help save lives through coast-to-coast “Make ‘em Bleed” roller derby blood drives, Aug. 2-Dec. 31. Attracting more donors than any other series of blood drives in California in 2014, Make ‘em Bleed roller derby blood drives collected enough blood to help save hundreds of lives by making it more convenient and fun to donate. This year, athletes on skates from across the U.S. will offer autographs, photo opportunities, roller skate cookies and temporary tattoos honoring derby’s 80th birthday Aug. 13, to inspire greater numbers of people to donate blood.

The 2015 Make ‘em Bleed roller derby blood drive series begins with events in cities across California, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Connecticut, and new blood drive dates are being scheduled in these states and others. For an updated list of Make ‘em Bleed roller derby blood drives, go to http://community.brownpapertickets.com/wp/roller-derby-blood-drives/. Walk-ins are welcome, but setting up an appointment by calling 1-800-RED CROSS or visiting redcrossblood.org and entering the sponsor code: DERBY is easy and more convenient.

“The girls are so welcoming, fun and energetic, it’s a fantastic atmosphere, with roller derby athletes skating in uniform, refreshments, giveaways and an all around good time,” said Hanna Malak, representative for the American Red Cross Northern California Blood Services Region. “The summer is one of the most difficult times for the Red Cross to collect blood, so ‘Make ‘em Bleed’ roller derby blood drives have really made a difference to help ensure blood is available for patients in need.”

"We are creating a celebration at every blood drive event that’s attracting more donors,” said Annelise Sexton, also known as Slaybia Majora, or “Slay,” in the roller derby community. Slay is the public relations manager for San Francisco’s B.ay A.rea D.erby Girls, a league ranked #3 in the sport worldwide. “Our league is proud to work with the Red Cross and with Brown Paper Tickets to help save lives in our community.”

“We hope to triple the number of lives we impact this year,” said Jerry Seltzer, Sonoma-based son of the inventor of roller derby, former commissioner of roller derby worldwide, a former board member for the American Red Cross of Northern California and former Ticketmaster vice president before he joined Brown Paper Tickets.

“Brown Paper Tickets donates five percent to nonprofits with every ticket sold, and community service is written into the charter of every roller derby league worldwide,” said Seltzer. “The Make ‘em Bleed roller derby blood drives are a match made in community service heaven.” The Not-Just-For-Profit ticketing, event registration and online donation service, Brown Paper Tickets hosts the largest list of roller derby events on sale around the world at http://community.brownpapertickets.com/rollerderby/, offers professional pro-bono assistance to nonprofit derby leagues globally through its Doer Program and donates five percent of its profits to charity with every ticket sold.

The schedule of nationwide Make ‘em Bleed roller derby blood drives is growing weekly; a complete and updated list of times and locations can be found at http://community.brownpapertickets.com/wp/roller-derby-blood-drives, by calling 1-800-RED CROSS or visiting redcrossblood.org and entering the sponsor code: DERBY.

2015 Make ‘em Bleed Roller Derby Blood Drives:

Sunday, Aug. 2 (Auburn, Massachusetts): Join the Worcester Roller Derby from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Horgan Skating Arena, 410 Oxford St.

Friday, Aug. 21 (Livermore, California): Join the Quad City Derby Bombshells from 1-7 p.m. at the Asbury United Methodist Church, 4743 East Ave.

Sunday, Aug. 23 (Middleboro, Massachusetts): Join the Mass Attack roller derby from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Middleboro Elks Club, 24 High St.

Sunday, Aug. 30 (Trumbull, Connecticut): Join the Connecticut Roller Girls from 9:30a.m.-2:30 p.m. at the Red Cross Bus parked at the Redwood Roller Rink, 1303 Main St.

Saturday, Sept. 5 (Rohnert Park, California): Join the Resurrection Derby Girls from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Red Cross Bus parked in front of Cal Skate, 6100 Commerce Blvd.

Saturday, Sept. 5 (Redwood City, California): Join the Peninsula Roller Girls from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Redwood City Women's Club, 149 Clinton St.

Saturday, Sept. 12 (Lancaster, Massachusetts): Save the date! Join the Mass Maelstrom Roller Derby from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at a location TBD.

Saturday, Sept. 12 (Antioch, California): Save the date! Join the Undead Bettys at a location TBD.

Saturday, Sept. 19 (San Francisco, California): Join the B.ay A.rea D.erby Girls at a location TBD.

Saturday, Oct. 31 (Dover, New Hampshire): Join the Seacoast Roller Derby from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Dover Bowl, 8878 Central Ave.

Tuesday, Dec. 1 (Concord, New Hampshire): Join the Granite State Roller Derby from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Everett Arena, 15 Loudon Rd.

Saturday, Dec. 7 (Keene, New Hampshire): Join the Elm City Derby Damez from noon. to 5 p.m. at the St. Bernard Church, 185 Main Street.

*All giveaway items are provided while supplies last, are non-transferrable and not redeemable for cash.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Roller derby athletes from your area are willing to appear in full derby costume and roller skates for interviews, carrying props from their upcoming Make ‘em Bleed blood drive, such as the roller derby-themed cookies and temporary tattoos that will be given to blood drive donors. High-resolution images are available, as well as interview opportunities with a representative from the American Red Cross and with Brown Paper Tickets’ Jerry Seltzer, son of the inventor of the sport of roller derby and contributor to the official recorded history of the sport for the United States Library of Congress. Call Barb Morgen at 1-800-838-3006 ext. 7124 or at 206-883-9093, or email Barb(at)brownpapertickets(dot)com for more information.

How to donate blood
Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental consent in some states), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.

About the American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or on Twitter at @RedCross.

About Brown Paper Tickets
Brown Paper Tickets is a ticketing, event registration and online fundraising service with the largest commitment to social responsibility and to the sport of roller derby in the ticketing industry. The company helps people in 68 countries to sell tickets, connect with their fans, grow capacity for causes, and strengthen communities through live, local events. As a Not-Just-For-Profit company, Brown Paper Tickets provides technology and professional counsel to ensure the success and profits for every event, while fueling donations for social good. Learn more at brownpapertickets.com.

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