INDIANAPOLIS – With the holiday season underway, many are overwhelmed with obtaining gifts for loved ones. However, on Saturday, December 8, 2012, thousands of Hoosiers and Colts fans from across the country took time to consider giving the gift of life by participating in the Bleed Blue Blood Drive & Health Fair at Lucas Oil Stadium. For the 13th year, the Indianapolis Colts and Indiana Blood Center hosted the largest single-day blood drive in Indiana with support from ADVANTAGE Health Solutions and WTHR Channel 13.
Despite the chilled weather and spotty rain, Colts fans from as far as Virginia made their way to Lucas Oil Stadium for a day focused on learning about various programs to live healthier lives and improving the quality of life for those battling illness or recovering from accidents. Blood donor participation achieved a record-high for the event. During this year's drive, 2,340 people participated which is approximately 400 more participants than in 2011!
Colts fans and visitors were able to participate in the free health fair, which featured more than 40 vendors offering free services and screenings. Guests were able to partake in family-friendly activities, such as face-painting, visiting the field to play on inflatables and participating in fitness classes. More than 200 children participated in a Colts Youth Football Clinic, engaging them in 60 minutes of physical activity as a part of the NFL PLAY 60 message. Blue, the team mascot, stopped by the event to throw a few passes to kids and take photos. Fans were also able to meet Colts Alumni Players Tarik Glenn and Marlin Jackson as they signed autographs.
Colts Cheerleaders made appearances throughout the day for fan autographs and to greet blood donors. Cheerleader Megan M., one of two cheerleaders who recently shaved her head in honor of Coach Pagano, held the hand of a brave young girl who decided to display her CHUCKSTRONG support by shaving her head. Her decision, supported by parents, was inspired by two of her family members who had battled cancer.
Blood donations are a continuous need for medical patients throughout Indiana. Now thru the end of December, fans who would like to receive a Head Coach Chuck Pagano football but did not have a chance to attend the Bleed Blue Blood Drive & Health Fair may donate blood at any one of the nine Indiana Blood Center locations for an opportunity to receive the special edition ball, while supplies last. To view the selected dates for this opportunity and to schedule your appointment, visit www.indianablood.org.
About Indiana Blood Center
Indiana Blood Center was founded in 1952 and is a non-profit community service organization meeting patient's blood needs at over 60 hospitals across Indiana, by seeing 620 volunteer blood donors each day. The goal is met with the help of the nearly 2,000 organizations who host blood drives in 80 of Indiana's 92 counties and through the dedication of 450 Indiana Blood Center staff who live the daily mission of delivering a constant, stable supply of blood components to patients in Indiana hospitals. Indiana Blood Center is the largest independent blood center in Indiana and among the top 20 nationally, distributing more than 180,000 blood components each year.