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Manchester Road Race to hold annual blood drive following race day

The 35th annual Ray Crothers Blood Drive will be held at Manchester High School on Nov. 26.

MANCHESTER, Conn. — The Manchester Road Race (MRR) is holding the 35th Annual Ray Crothers Blood Drive the day after the race. 

The blood drive will be on Nov. 26 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the gymnasium at Manchester High School. Race officials said everyone who donates a pint of blood will receive a Manchester Road Race t-shirt.

Last year, although the MRR was held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic, race organizers sponsored the blood drive as usual and collected 306 pints of blood, which benefited 918 patients in need of blood, plasma, and platelets.

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RELATED: Local businesses find themselves back in the running ahead of Manchester Road Race

The local drive has in recent years become one of the largest single-day blood collection efforts in Connecticut, and 7,187 pints of blood have been donated at it since it began, race officials said.

“Our success, collecting 306 pints of blood last year during the COVID pandemic, was due to our sponsors, ECHN and the Eastern Connecticut Pathology group, the many volunteers, the great staff of the American Red Cross, and all of our donors,” said Lance Morgan, a physician’s assistant and member of the MRR Executive Committee, who oversees the drive.

Morgan, and Dr. Tris Carta, President of the Manchester Road Race Committee, are both hopeful that even more donors will participate this year.  

“We are urging all of our runners, fans, and volunteers who possibly can to consider donating a pint of blood at our drive,” said Carta, a local dentist. “It will save lives and help so many people,” he added.

Walk-in donors are welcome.  Appointments, which are encouraged, can be made by calling 1-800-733-2767, or online at the Red Cross website, www.redcrossblood.org.

Learn more about the race here.

RELATED: 60 and 70-somethings all in step | “Running Amigos” ready to return to the Manchester Road Race

Tune in at 9 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day for FOX61's full coverage of the Manchester Road Race. The race will be broadcast live on FOX61, fox61.com, FOX61's news, ROKU and Amazon FireTV apps and on FOX61’s YouTube page.

The two-hour show will be re-broadcast on CW20 at 4 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day.

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