NASCAR Foundation news 2008-10-21

The NASCAR Foundation Calls On Fans To Join In On Make A Difference Day; October 25 Marks National Initiative Through USA Weekend CHARLOTTE, N.C. (Oct. 21, 2008) -- The NASCAR Foundation, in a continuing effort to promote volunteer...

The NASCAR Foundation Calls On Fans To Join In On Make A Difference Day; October 25 Marks National Initiative Through USA Weekend

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (Oct. 21, 2008) -- The NASCAR Foundation, in a continuing effort to promote volunteer opportunities, is calling on NASCAR fans to join more than three million Americans expected to volunteer for USA WEEKEND's Make A Difference Day on Saturday, Oct. 25. It is America's largest day of service and an estimated 25 million people benefit each year on this annual "day of doing good."

For 2008, The NASCAR Foundation Volunteer Network is supporting USA WEEKEND's Make A Difference Day by featuring messages at selected racetracks and at NASCAR.com/foundation as well as working with the publication to highlight the charitable efforts of four NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers -- Jimmie Johnson, Elliott Sadler, Kyle Petty and Kasey Kahne. All four have been featured in the publication each month beginning in July. The Foundation has also mobilized its Volunteer Network of 6,000 fans and encouraged them to participate in a project in their local community.

Make A Difference Day was created by USA WEEKEND Magazine, and is held in partnership with the HandsOn Network. Actor and philanthropist Paul Newman supported Make A Difference Day for 14 years by providing an annual $100,000 donation shared by the charities of 10 National Make A Difference Day Award honorees. His legacy continues for a 15th year through his food company, Newman's Own, which will fund this year's awards.

"This effort goes a long way to demonstrate the big heart and the will to help that exists in our sport," said Mike Helton, president of NASCAR and The NASCAR Foundation board member. "We proudly join the call to ask our NASCAR fans and family to go and make a difference in your community on October 25."

"In a world that's changing so fast and leaving so many people in need, the caring actions that take place on Make A Difference Day are more crucial than ever," says Marcia Bullard, president and CEO of USA WEEKEND. "For 18 years, Americans have reached out on this day to help others and make our communities better places to live. The Day is an inspiring and reliable reminder of the best of this nation's spirit."

Thousands of projects are being planned by corporations, communities, non-profits, entire states and everyday Americans. Below are a few examples of projects. For more, go to makeadifferenceday.com.

On Oct. 26, the NASCAR Foundation Volunteer Network Track Walk at the Atlanta Motor Speedway concludes a week of charitable efforts, including outreach to hospitalized kids and an online auction at NASCAR.com/foundation featuring driver memorabilia.

In our nation's capital, volunteers from USA WEEKEND, Greater DC Cares, First Book and Washington Parks & People will clean Marvin Gaye Park in the northeast section of the city. In addition, volunteers will make the first distribution of what will total 25,000 donated books -- Hoop Kings and Hoop Queens -- to students in D.C. Public Schools.

In Minneapolis, 250 volunteers -- fueled by a breakfast of Newman's Own Sweet Enough cereal and led by Volunteers of America-Minnesota -- will be fanning out to multiple sites across the city. This is one of 10 projects and thousands of volunteers nationwide receiving a cereal donation from Newman's Own.

In 10 states and Washington, D.C., staff and residents in 180 AvalonBay Communities, led by chairman and CEO Bryce Blair, will support volunteer efforts from Long Island, N.Y. to Bellevue, Wash.

The Chicago cast and crew of the musical Wicked will partner with the Museum of Science and Industry to raise eco-awareness.

In Nashville, Broken Bow recording artist Randy Owen -- lead singer of the legendary group Alabama -- teams up with Clear Channel's The Big 98 WSIX and Hands On Nashville, to lead hundreds of volunteers in multiple school-based cleanup projects. He'll conclude the day with an acoustic concert at Hall of Fame Park. Owen's debut solo album, One On One, and his memoir, Born Country, hit stores in early November.

-credit: nascar foundation

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About this article
Series Charity , NASCAR
Drivers Kyle Petty , Jimmie Johnson , Paul Newman , Kasey Kahne , Mike Helton , Elliott Sadler