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Charity at Big M Friday

May 10, 2007

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Harness racing’s top female drivers will compete in a race to benefit the Children’s Miracle Network on Friday, May 18, at the Meadowlands. Members of the Mildred Williams Ladies Driving Series will donate their earnings from the race to Children’s Miracle Network, a non-profit organization dedicated to saving and improving the lives of children by raising funds for children’s hospitals across North America. 

Now in its second year, the Mildred Williams Driving Series creates racing opportunities for female drivers in harness racing while raising money for charity.  Named for 90-year-old Mildred Williams, one of the sport’s first successful female drivers, it has expanded to include 37 venues across North America that host races for the series. Series participant Terry Donnelly, who operates a Dairy Queen restaurant in Newfoundland, N.J., suggested Children’s Miracle Network be the recipient of the Meadowlands’ donation since it is the Dairy Queen system’s charity of choice.

“This is a unique way to raise much needed funds and awareness for our member hospitals and to get the Dairy Queen operators in New Jersey involved in the effort,” Donnelly said. “It is all about increasing Children’s Miracle Network awareness.”
Children’s Miracle Network will have tables located throughout the racetrack building selling merchandise and collecting donations. Meadowlands guests wearing items with Children’s Miracle Network or Dairy Queen logos receive free racetrack admission, beginning at 5:30 p.m. Live racing begins at 7:30 p.m.

In addition, all children will receive a free dessert at the racetrack’s Terraces Restaurant that evening. Reservations are recommended; call (201) THE-BIGM.

Alyssa Brandle, a 2007 Children’s Miracle Network Champion Child, will be at the Meadowlands to help the public understand the importance of the charity’s efforts. Brandle, 16, suffered from frequent and severe seizures until she underwent surgery at the Bristol-Myers Squibb Children’s Hospital at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Brunswick, N.J. 

Bristol-Myers Squibb Children’s Hospital is one of 170 Children\'s Miracle Network hospitals that provide medical care, life-saving research and preventative education to help children overcome disease and injury. Children\'s Miracle Network hospitals provide charity care worth billions, yet depend on community support to help fund their vital services. Through its year-round efforts to help kids, Children\'s Miracle Network has raised more than $2.7 billion to date, most of which is donated a dollar or two at a time by caring individuals across North America. (Meadowlands) 
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