-Pistons Cares Telethon Benefiting Make-A-Wish Foundation of Michigan Scheduled for Friday, March 14-
Auburn Hills, Mich. – March 11, 2008 – For the first time in Detroit sports history, a team will devote an entire day, including their game and their broadcast, to a telethon that will raise money for charity.
On Friday, March 14, as part of the Detroit Pistons’ season long celebration of 50 years in Michigan, the organization will host the Pistons Cares Telethon Benefiting the Make-A-Wish Foundation – Michigan Chapter and will ask everyone in the Pistons community to help them reach their goal of granting wishes for children with life-threatening conditions.
The telethon will run throughout the day and into the evening as the Pistons host the defending NBA Champion San Antonio Spurs at 8 p.m. On March 14, fans can call in their pledges to a toll free number starting at 6 a.m.
Donations can be made immediately by visiting www.pistons.com and clicking on the
‘DONATE NOW” button. Online donations will be taken up to March 14 at 6 p.m. Starting Thursday, February 28, interested donors can call toll free 1-877-DPC-WISH (1-877-372-9474) to contribute to the telethon.
“We want everyone involved – fans, sponsors, staff, players — because Make-A-Wish does so much good, for so many kids,” said Tom Wilson, CEO of Palace Sports & Entertainment. “The day we grant these wishes will be a great day, not only for the kids but for all of us.”
The entire WDIV-TV4 game telecast will be devoted to the telethon. Throughout the night, representatives from the Pistons community will ask fans to call and pledge. Sponsors will present their donations and the Pistons will introduce stories of past and present Make-A-Wish kids.
All donations taken – online, over the phone, through pre-telethon pledges and in-arena the night of March 14 – will place each donor into a drawing for unique, one-of-a kind prizes from the Detroit Pistons, including the grand prize of a road trip with the team on Roundball One.
Committed since the Friday, February 22 game versus Milwaukee and including all home games to March 14, the Pistons will donate 3% of their overall sales in the Locker Room Stores at The Palace to the telethon. This includes games against Seattle (3/4), Chicago (3/9), Philadelphia (3/12) and the game against San Antonio on March 14.
This past Monday, February 25, the regularly scheduled Merchandise Mondays posted on www.pistons.com were changed to Make-A-Wish Mondays. For every merchandise order that is placed on the site, whether the order is for the Monday special or not, a donation of $5.00 will be made to the Pistons Cares Telethon.
Also, Majestic Athletics has agreed to donate 4,000 t-shirts imprinted with the Pistons Cares Telethon logo, which will be worn by PS&E staff the day of the telethon.
The Pistons as a team are committed to contribute to the Telethon. Details of the Pistons’ players involvement are forthcoming in the weeks leading up to March 14.
DETROIT PISTONS PARTNERS
From a Palace Sports & Entertainment partner side, starting March 9 and running to the 21, telecommunications carrier AT&T will donate $50 to the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Michigan for every new subscriber to AT&T Advance TV* that mentions the Pistons Cares Telethon.
Rock Financial, the presenting sponsor for the Detroit Pistons for the past five seasons, has committed to being involved with the Telethon and is in discussions for unique ways to get their entire staff involved on March 14.
Detroit Pistons partners Big Boy Restaurants, Gatorade, Marathon, HAP and Flag Star Bank have already committed to contributing to the cause of granting wishes. More partner announcements are anticipated.
CONCERT INDUSTRY INVOLVEMENT
The nation’s two biggest concert promoters, Live Nation and AEG Live, have stepped up with a commitment to donate.
The entire staff at Palace Sports & Entertainment will be heavily involved in the Pistons Cares Telethon. From answering phones on March 14 and taking pledges, to contributing donations through an Employee Jeans Day, everyone from PS&E is committed to the cause.
In a show of solidarity and support, Palace Sports & Entertainment’s parent company Guardian Industries, the flagship of Mr. William Davidson’s corporations, has also pledged time and money through an Employee Jeans Day.
Beginning Friday, February 22, the Detroit Pistons community relations department will donate all in-arena auction proceeds to the Telethon.
The organization is reaching out to its media partners to support the event and it has already received positive responses from a number of print, radio and television outlets. Radio stations WRIF-FM, WCSX-FM, CIMX-FM, CIDR-FM, WDMK-FM, WHTD-FM, WKQI-FM, WYCD-FM, WXYT-AM & FM, WCHB-AM and WWJ-AM have already agreed to participate on-site on the day of the telethon. The Oakland Press, Detroit Free Press and Detroit News will support the event by donating space for promotional ads. CBS Outdoor and Lamar Advertising have each donated multiple billboards that are being used to promote the telethon.
Beginning March 4, the night the Piston host the Seattle Supersonics, fans will have an opportunity to add a minimal donation to their concession stand order to support the telethon.
At all of the The Palace’s private clubs, including Caesar’s Windsor, the Ameriprise Financial Club and the Fifth Third Club, a pledge table will be set up starting March 4 where fans can fill out their pledge forms and get an early start contributing to the telethon.
The Palace’s public clubs will also be participating. The Captain’s Quarters, the Palace Grille and the Red Bull Bar in the Comcast Pavilion will all be accepting donations for individual “stars” that will be hung around the clubs and staff will be promoting the telethon via their individual uniforms.
“The Make-A-Wish Foundation of Michigan is delighted to partner with the Detroit Pistons and our community to bring joy to the brave kids we serve,” said Susan Lerch, president and CEO of the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Michigan. “We look forward to continuing this wonderful partnership to grant wishes and we are so grateful!”
For more information regarding the Pistons Cares Telethon Benefiting Make-A-Wish Foundation of Michigan, please contact Director of Community Relations Dennis Sampier at (248) 371-2034 or visit www.pistons.com.
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