New York Roller Derby Athletes Help the American Red Cross to Attract More Donors During Critical Blood Shortage

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New York roller derby leagues will kick off the nation’s largest roller derby blood drive series, Blood for Life, with blood drive events every Saturday in July hosted by athletes in uniform offering photo opportunities, autographs, roller skate buttons and temporary tattoos to attract more donors following an appeal by the American Red Cross for emergency blood donations.

Blood for Life roller derby blood drives will be hosted by roller derby leagues from coast to coast to help the American Red Cross attract more donors during a critical blood shortage.

“Summer is always one of the most difficult times for the Red Cross to collect blood, but this year the need is even more urgent than in the past,” said Hanna Malak, representative for the American Red Cross.

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New York roller derby leagues will kick off “Blood for Life,” the nation’s largest series of roller derby blood drives, in partnership with Brown Paper Tickets and the American Red Cross following the humanitarian organization’s report of a critical blood shortage and emergency appeal for donors to give blood as soon as possible. Athletes in full roller derby uniform at Blood for Life blood drives will offer photo opportunities, autographs, roller skate buttons and temporary tattoos to attract more donors than the average community service event. The Blood for Life roller derby blood drive series begins Saturday, July 16 at the American Red Cross of Greater New York, 520 W 49th St. from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., hosted by the New York Shock Exchange roller derby league.

Blood for Life roller derby blood drives will be hosted by different New York leagues every Saturday in July before the nation’s largest roller derby blood drive series rolls into other states in August, powered by their own local athletes. New Blood for Life roller derby blood drives are being announced weekly; for the most up-to-date list of locations, dates and times from coast to coast, go to http://community.brownpapertickets.com/wp/coast-to-coast-roller-derby-blood-drives-kick-off/.

“Summer is always one of the most difficult times for the Red Cross to collect blood, but this year the need is even more urgent than in the past,” said Hanna Malak, representative for the American Red Cross. “The Blood for Life roller derby blood drives create a fantastic atmosphere, with roller derby athletes skating in uniform, refreshments, giveaways and an all-around good time that may really make a difference to ensure that blood is available for patients in need.”

“Community service is written in the charter of every roller derby league across the globe,” said Jerry Seltzer, son of the man who invented the sport of roller derby nearly 81 years ago and a former executive vice president for Ticketmaster who now works with Brown Paper Tickets, a Not-Just-for-Profit event company that serves as the largest ticketing portal for roller derby events worldwide. “Partnering roller derby leagues with Brown Paper Tickets and the American Red Cross is a match made in community service heaven.”

To schedule a convenient and fast donation time, call 1-800-RED-CROSS or visit http://www.redcrossblood.org and enter the sponsor code: DERBY to find a roller derby blood drive near you. Appointments are strongly encouraged but walk-ins are welcome.

2016 Blood for Life Roller Derby Blood Drives in New York:

Saturday, July 16 (New York, New York): Join the New York Shock Exchange from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the American Red Cross of Greater New York, Halls H and J, 520 West 49th Street.

Saturday, July 23 (Stony Brook, New York): Join the Strong Island Derby Revolution from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Hilton Garden Inn Stony Brook, 1 Circle Road.

Saturday, July 30 (New York, New York): Join the Gotham Girls Roller Derby and co-hosts Suburbia Roller Derby from 10 a.m.to 3 p.m. at the American Red Cross of Greater New York, 520 West 49th Street, Halls H and J.

TBA (Hudson Valley, New York): Join the New York Firestorm at a date, time and location to be announced.

Follow the roller derby blood drives at #bloodforlife. Any roller derby league wishing to bring the Blood for Life roller derby blood drive series to their hometown should email organizers at rollerderbybloodforlife(at)gmail(dot)com.

EDITOR’S NOTE: In-studio or telephone interviews with your local roller derby league and all people quoted in this story, along with high-resolution photos, video of a Blood for Life roller derby blood drive and more are available. Contact Barb Morgen at rollerderbybloodforlife(at)gmail(dot)com or at 206-883-9093 for assistance.

About the American Red Cross:
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.

About Brown Paper Tickets:
Brown Paper Tickets (brownpapertickets.com) provides easy, no cost online event registration and ticketing with the lowest fee for ticket buyers in the live events industry, 24/7 live event concierge service and the largest commitment to social responsibility in the ticketing industry. The Not-Just-for-Profit company donates 5 percent of the profits from every ticket sold and employs a team of experts in roller derby giving free assistance to leagues and playing an active role in helping the sport and the roller derby community to continue to grow and thrive.

*All giveaway items are provided while supplies last.

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Barb Morgen
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