The country band Hitchville rocked downtown Wayzata last Saturday to benefit Be The Match Foundation. The event was co-hosted by Lake Minnetonka area residents Andrew and Kristyn Mullin and Dave and Sue Pearce.
The street dance raised thousands of dollars for Be The Match Foundation in support of Minnesota based non-profit The National Marrow Donor Program.
Andrew Mullin, a Wayzata city councilman, is the 2012 Chair of Be The Match Foundation Leadership Council. He became involved in bone marrow match advocacy after giving his own back in 2008.
"It was the Monday after Father's Day," he said. "I found Be The Match through Google."
The Leadership Council is comprised of business and community leaders who volunteer to helping patients who need a transplant. Saturday's fundraiser was Mullin's brain child and will provide a welcome donation to bone marrow pairing efforts.
"Many of us arrive at a point in our lives when we want to do more for our communities, and this was a great way to do just that," Mullin said. "I have ton of fun the process."
Saturday's event in Wayzata got some push on several Metro radio stations, which Mullin said boosted attendence into the hundreds. In addition, several corporate sponsors stepped forward to provide support which Mullin says Be The Match was very grateful to receive.
Guests at Saturday's fundraiser were treated to a night of country rock courtesy of Hitchville, who recently released their debut album and have been the featured opening act for Kenny Chesney and Sugarland.
The nonprofit National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP) is the global leader in providing bone marrow and umbilical cord blood transplants to patients in need. The Be The Match Registry is the world’s largest listing of potential marrow donors and donated cord blood units.
Be The Match also pairs patients with donors, educates health care professionals and conducts research through its research arm, the Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research (CIBMTR).
Every year, thousands of people of all ages are diagnosed with blood cancers like leukemia or lymphoma, sickle cell anemia or other life-threatening diseases. Many of them will die unless they get a bone marrow or cord blood transplant from a matching donor. Seventy percent of people do not have a donor in their family and depend on our Be The Match Registry to find a match to save their life.