NFL Legend and Founder of Lights Out Brand Shawne Merriman Hosts 12th Annual Coat Drive at UMD

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Former NFL linebacker and founder of Lights Out Brand athletic wear Shawne Merriman is thrilled to announce his Lights On Foundation’s 12th Annual Coat Drive taking place on Saturday, November 15, 2014 at University of Maryland, College Park’s Byrd Stadium. All collected cold-weather items from the drive will be donated to homeless persons in the surrounding Washington, DC metro area to keep them safe from harsh conditions throughout the winter.

...Merriman is highly involved in using his success as a sports mogul and retailer to create a positive impact and give back to the local community.

NFL legend and entrepreneur, Shawne Merriman, will be hosting his annual Lights On Foundation’s 12th Annual Coat Drive this Saturday, November 15th, 2014 at the University of Maryland College Park’s Byrd Stadium, located at 2740 Comcast Center in College Park, MD.

As founder and owner of the Lights On Foundation and Lights Out Brand—his own empire of cutting-edge athletic wear and accessories - Merriman is highly involved in using his success as a sports mogul and retailer to create a positive impact and give back to the local community.

Returning to his hometown this weekend, University of Maryland, College Park is where Merriman first made his mark as a noteworthy football player, with the Capitol One Field at Byrd Stadium holding significant meaning to the professional athlete and public figure.

The Coat Drive is set to take place at the field on Saturday from 6:30 pm to 7:30 pm, just before the 8 pm start of the Big Ten Maryland vs. Michigan State game. Merriman will be in attendance for the duration of the coat drive, and will be available for interviews during, as well as in the days leading up to, the event.

The coats and other cold weather outerwear collected at the drive will be distributed to families in need to protect them from the harsh conditions anticipated in the months to come. The foundation welcomes any new or gently used items that can be spared to help those less fortunate, who are struggling to keep themselves and/or their families warm throughout the winter. Items eligible for donation include coats, hats, scarves, gloves, and any other cold weather clothing and accessories.

This is the twelfth year that Shawne’s Lights On Foundation has sponsored the coat drive in College Park, with over 20,000 coats and items already provided to homeless individuals in the Washington, DC metro area thus far. To compliment to his charity work, Merriman has created his Lights Out empire to inspire young people to work hard and never give up on their dreams.

“I want to empower others to get back up, try again, and never stop believing in themselves. I hope that the work I accomplish—between my Lights On Foundation, Lights Out sports apparel brand, and other endeavors—reflect the message to meet adversity with strength and perseverance,” shared Merriman.

“There are some people that have not been as lucky or fortunate in life or just going through a rough spot, and I feel a personal responsibility to use my resources and connections to give back to those less fortunate. I can only hope that my own personal and professional Light Outs brand stand for that quality—where strength and power are met with humility and empathy for others,” he concluded.

Those interested in obtaining more information about this Saturday’s Lights On Foundation’s 12th Annual Coat Drive, please contact University of Maryland College Park’s event organizer, Natasha Criss at ncriss(at)umd(dot)edu or 301.314.7038.

For inquiries about interviewing Shawne Merriman prior to or during the event, please contact Lindsey Deierling at LindseyD(at)EAGSportManagement(dot)com or 310.301.4274.

About Lights Out Brand:
Founded in 2004 by former NFL linebacker Shawne Merriman, Lights Out is a fast-growing company that specializes in high-quality, edgy lifestyle & athletic apparel. The athletic mogul built the brand as a reflection of his fierce determination, impressive strength, and avid persistence—both on and off the field. Lights Out Brand is an ecommerce retail operation that offers lifestyle apparel, accessories, and sports gear for both men and women. For more information please visit

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