American Red Cross celebrates century of service in state with St. Louis Park blood drive

The American Red Cross will celebrate its century of service in Minnesota with a community blood drive noon to 6 p.m. Monday, June 26, at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Minneapolis – Park Place, 1500 Park Place Blvd. in St. Louis Park.

The Red Cross Minnesota’s board of directors will host the blood drive in honor of the men and women in uniform who serve the community. All those who come to donate will receive a commemorative T-shirt and one free ticket valid for entry to participating U.S. Cedar Fair amusement parks, including Valleyfair, while supplies last. Tickets are valid for the 2017 season, and other restrictions may apply.

“We want to honor those who serve to help keep our communities safe and vibrant because they know firsthand how important it is to have blood readily available for emergencies,” said Phil Hansen, regional executive of the Red Cross Minnesota Region. “The importance of giving blood is paramount as blood may be needed at any given time. It’s the blood on the shelves that help save lives.”

To schedule an appointment to donate at the centennial blood drive, download the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-733-2767 and use the keyword “ARC Blood Drive.”

“One of the greatest ways we can honor the men and women who serve our country is by giving the gift of life through a blood donation,” said Johanna P. Clyborne, a brigadier general in the Minnesota Army National Guard. “Blood is needed every two seconds by someone in the U.S., and I thank everyone in the community who has given blood in honor of those who serve.”

The Red Cross generally sees a decline in blood donations during the summer months, especially around holidays. The organization seeks donations of all types of blood to help avoid a summer shortage.