San Diego, California - The San Diego Blood Bank, in partnership with members of the local sports community, will host “San Diego Cares: It’s in our Blood” on Saturday, December 16, 2017 from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. at the Town & Country Convention Center in San Diego.
Alumni from the San Diego Padres and Chargers, along with representatives from the San Diego Gulls, San Diego Sockers, University of San Diego, Tijuana Xolos, San Diego Kings, 1904 Football Club, the Holiday Bowl and others from the San Diego sports community, will join forces as the San Diego Blood Bank hosts San Diego Cares: It’s in our Blood. This exciting new event will celebrate a San Diego that cares for its community, while maintaining a major local sports-team presence.
“When the Chargers announced they were leaving, we were immediately contacted by the Padres, the Gulls, the Holiday Bowl, and other community leaders, who have all committed to making sure this critical need during the holiday season is met,” said David Wellis, Chief Executive Officer of the San Diego Blood Bank. “There is no substitute for blood, which means hospital patients rely on the generosity of San Diegans in their time of need.”
San Diego Cares will include a full-day blood drive, live entertainment, sports-themed activities for the whole family, appearances and autographs by local sports celebrities, as well as interactive panels featuring members of some of the greatest teams in San Diego sports history.
A preliminary list of celebrities scheduled to attend includes Chris Gomez, Randy Jones, Wally Joyner and Greg Vaughn from the Padres, and Vince Abbott, Hank Bauer, Rolf Benirschke, Darren Carrington, Luis Castillo, Jacques Cesaire, Kris Dielman, Donnie Edwards, Don Macek, Dennis McKnight and Kellen Winslow from the Chargers.
The annual Chargers Blood Drive became a tradition in San Diego for 38 years. It began as an effort to help Benirschke, who suffered from ulcerative colitis, and in the ensuing years, it collected over 74,000 pints of blood and helped save an estimated 220,000 lives.
Donors who are unable to attend San Diego Cares on the 16th can still get in on the action by participating in “San Diego Cares Mania,” which is going on now and will continue thru Dec. 15. Anyone who donates blood at a San Diego Blood Bank donor center or mobile drive now thru Dec. 15 will receive a voucher for a San Diego Cares t-shirt, a wristband for VIP autograph access, and a voucher for a free entry into a drawing for a new Honda CR-V (vouchers redeemable at the San Diego Cares event on Dec. 16).
In order to be eligible to donate blood, donors must be at least 17 years old (16 years old with parental consent), weigh at least 114 pounds, and be in general good health. Eligible blood donors are encouraged to schedule an appointment to give by visiting iCareSanDiego.com or calling 1-800-4-MY-SDBB (1-800-469-7322).