Media Contacts

Director of Community
Relations & Marketing

Carleen Crawford
616-233-8669  office
616-443-6028  cell

Grand Rapids

Kristen Nauss
616-233-8524  office
616-328-7123  cell

Southwest Michigan

Valary Gent
269-585-3759  office
269-491-1007  cell

Great Lakes Bay Region

Tamar Chipp
989-497-1053  office
989-859-6782  cell

Traverse City

Allison Beers
231-883-2708  cell




News Releases


Michigan Blood to Host Blood & Marrow Registry Drive To Help Diversify The Blood Supply

In effort to diversify the community blood supply, Michigan Blood is hosting a blood and marrow registry drive aimed at increasing donations from African-Americans.

Click to read more ...


Wurst Festival Ever Selects Michigan Blood as Charity Partner

Percent of ‘Everybody Run, It’s a Blood Bath!’ 5K Fun Run Proceeds to Offset
Adding More Potential Bone Marrow Donors to National Be The Match Registry®  


Jeff Lenhart, owner of the New Salem Corn Maze, knows how to throw a party – even if it is called the Wurst Festival Ever.  Lenhart is the brainchild behind this annual event held at his Corn Maze, located at 4516 24th Street in Dorr.  This year’s festival runs Friday-Sunday, September 27-29th, and includes live music, brats and beverages, hot air balloons, farm animals, pumpkins, a bouncy house, train and hay rides,  a wiener dog race, Oktoberfest/German food,  and a haunted woods and corn maze – with zombies lurking – and a 5k fun run.  

And with zombies, comes ‘blood,’ and the idea to add a charity partner.  Enter Michigan Blood and its Stem Cell Programs.  A portion of the entry proceeds for the ‘Everybody Run, It’s a Blood Bath!” 5K Fun Run on September 28th at 9 AM will benefit tissue testing costs of the program.  Lenhart explains: “We’ve been doing this Wurst Festival Ever for 4 years now.  We thought we should add a new element and use this addition to benefit Michigan Blood. I’ve learned a lot about what they do at Michigan Blood Stem Cell Programs to offer lifesaving treatments for patients with leukemia, lymphoma, and 70+ other blood related diseases and I look forward to the chance to contribute to such a great cause.” 

The cost to enter is $25 and includes a t-shirt and free entry to the Wurst Festival ($5 value).  Ryan Heinhuis, MPH, a recruiter for the programs, notes: “As a regional chapter of the Be The Match Registry, Michigan Blood is committed to adding new potential bone marrow donors to the Registry. Each of these potential donors has the chance to then be called to save a life. It costs roughly $100 to add one new donor to the Registry as a result of tissue-type testing fees. Charity partnerships like that with the Wurst Festival Ever make it possible to continue our lifesaving mission. We are very thankful to The Lenhart Family for this opportunity. It’s going to be a riot!”

The event is a fun run and obstacle course. Runners will pass Witch Mountain, The Witch’s Web, and jump through the Witches Wheels of Misfortune. Those interested can register online at

Questions about the National Marrow Donor Program and Be the Match Registry should be directed to Ryan Heinhuis at 616-233-8678 or  


Michigan Blood to Partner with Islamic Society of Midland

Michigan Blood is partnering with the Islamic Society of Midland (ISM) to host a blood and marrow registry drive.

The drive will run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, September 21 at the Islamic Center of Midland, 1801 N. Stark in Midland. ISM and siblings Jafar and Asma Siddiqui are organizing the drive in memory of their father Dr. Waheed Siddiqui who passed away from a rare form of leukemia in 2011. The Siddiqui family, pioneer members of the Society, hope to carry on Dr. Siddiqui’s legacy by inviting the community to help save lives.

“I gave blood before my father was diagnosed, but it became very real when he got ill,” said Jafar. “My mother and sister have been giving blood regularly for the last few years. When someone goes through this, you find inspiration to help others.”

Due to the severity of Dr. Siddiqui’s illness, the Dow Corning retiree was a candidate to receive a blood stem cell transplant. Despite attempts from family members to provide a match for a transplant, Dr. Siddiqui passed away before a match could be found. Because of the experience, the Siddiqui family and ISM were inspired to add a marrow registry to the blood drive to recruit potential donors to help find a cure for patients suffering from illnesses like leukemia and lymphoma.

Michigan Blood’s Stem Cell Program, a Be The Match Registry affiliate, will help facilitate the recruitment. 

“In a continuing effort to give back to the community, we are fully committed to serving in a variety of ways,” said Naveed Khan, president of the Islamic Society of Midland.One such way is by facilitating a blood and bone marrow drive at the Islamic Center.  What better contribution than the gift of life. We believe every step counts towards building a better and stronger nation.”

Jafar says the drive is also significant because it will be held in the mosque his father helped establish. The first Islamic Center in Midland opened its doors in the fall of 2011, only a few months after Dr. Siddiqui passed away.

“The event is extremely special because of the location, which is a huge part of the Islamic community in Midland,” said Jafar. “It’s great to see how the community has grown… and to have a building and an event that is carrying on my father’s legacy.”

To participate in the drive, donors can visit or call 1-866-MIBLOOD to make an appointment. Walk-ins are welcome. Any healthy person 17 or older (or 16 with parental consent) who weighs at least 110 pounds may be eligible to give blood every 56 days. Blood donors should bring photo ID (or two forms of non-photo ID). Every person that attempts to donate will be entered to win one of two $50 gift cards.

To join the National Marrow Donor Program’s Be the Match Registry, registrants must be between the ages of 18 and 44. The process includes filling out a health questionnaire and providing a cheek swab. The total cost to add a new member to the Registry is about $100. Michigan Blood fundraises throughout the year to offset the cost of tissue testing necessary for registration. Most often, a majority of these costs are covered and new registry members are asked to contribute only $25. Because of the need to diversify the Registry, those of diverse ethnic backgrounds are able to join at no cost with the help of federal funding. For more information, potential registrants can contact Ryan Heinhuis at (616) 233-8676 or by email at

Michigan Blood hosts 3,700 blood drives a year to help meet the needs of local hospitals across Michigan. In Midland, Michigan Blood is the exclusive blood provider for MidMichigan Medical Center - Midland.


There's Only One Spirit of America Blood Drive


MIS blood drive honors heroes, victims of 9-11


There’s only one Spirit of America blood drive.

Michigan International Speedway continues its amazing and heartfelt tradition of the Spirit of America blood drive on Wednesday, September 11. The event serves as a special day of activities to honor and remember the victims and heroes of 9-11.

And it only takes place at Michigan International Speedway.

The annual blood drive at the racetrack began as a tribute in 2002 in honor of the victims and heroes of 9-11. Since its inception in 2002, the Spirit of America blood drive has collected more than 8,876 pints of blood, positively affecting more than 26,688 lives.

The Spirit of America has evolved into more than just a blood drive. It’s an event and a time of reflection – all at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Mich.

“The Spirit of America is one of the most incredible events we will host all year,” said Roger Curtis, track president. “It has evolved out of a simple need to want to do something for 9-11 into a meaningful, heartfelt and truly good thing to do with our community. This event is unique to MIS, and the only place anywhere where the experience while here is as awesome as the act of donating blood itself.”

To participate in the commemorative tribute and behind the scenes MIS experience, donors must have an appointment. Appointments are limited to 600 guests between 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. and can be made online through:  or the Spirit of America website,

Appointments are also available by calling 1-866-miblood (866-642-5663). New donors are welcome. Donors may bring one non-donating person with them.

MIS has partnered with Michigan Blood, a nonprofit, community service organization founded in 1955, to host the blood drive and Be the Match® Registry drive.

Those who attempt to donate will have the opportunity to travel by MIS tram around the track, through the tunnel to the pits, and into MIS’s Home of the Brave, a 4,000-square-foot multi-media exhibit featuring “as it happened videos,” Presidential letters, magazines and newspapers, and additional tributes.

Donors will also be treated to a lunch by CP Federal Credit Union in the Champions Club overlooking the track.

In addition to lunch, the track tour and Heroes Hall experience, all donors will receive a Spirit of America gift bag, pin, t-shirt and commemorative item. During lunch, donors can also learn more about and join the National Marrow Donor Program’s Be the Match® Registry affiliated with Michigan Blood, and the Gift of Life Organ Donation Program.

At the conclusion of the tour, donors will get an up-close view of more than 3,000 American flags proudly displayed at Unity Field to honor the victims of 9-11. The flags, each representing victims of the 9-11 attacks, are placed in the speedway’s Lot 10 by veterans from local American Legion chapters.

Anyone may come to Unity Field. Only blood donors with scheduled appointments will receive the track and museum tours, gift bag and lunch.

To donate, you must be 17 years old (16 with written parent’s/guardian’s consent), weigh at least 110 pounds and pass the health screening.  You also may not have donated whole blood within the past 56 days of attempting to donate. Blood donors should bring photo ID (or two forms of non-photo ID).

For additional information on donating blood, check out


About Michigan International Speedway

Nestled in the lush Irish Hills of Southeastern Michigan, Michigan International Speedway is the Great Escape, a venerable NASCAR national park where fans can get away and enjoy the very best in racing and camaraderie. It’s the love of racing and the thrill of a great time at NASCAR’s fastest racetrack for race fans and drivers alike. 


Be Somebody, Bring Somebody

Invite new members to the lifesaving club of blood donors

Sometimes, all it takes is an invitation. If it’s a friend or family member doing the asking chances of getting a “yes” are even greater. This month, Michigan Blood is inviting blood donors to bring someone new into the lifesaving club. It’s all part of the Be Somebody ... Bring Somebody event, going on statewide at Michigan Blood donor centers August 27th through the 30th. 

As a non-profit independent community blood bank, Michigan Blood counts on voluntary donors to make sure enough blood is available to help patients at more than 40 Michigan hospitals. More than 120,000 units of blood must be collected each year to fill the need. Still, many potential blood donors in communities across the state tell us one of the main reasons they haven’t stepped up to help meet the need is simply because they’ve never been asked. 

Eileen Pawlicki recently invited her 16-year-old daughter along to donate for the first time at Michigan Blood’s Kalamazoo area donor center. Savannah Pawlicki-Mason says when her mom called to say she was going to donate, she didn’t hesitate to go along. “It’s one of the easiest ways to give back, and it’s not something you can make in a lab” says Savannah. She added “it was a fun experience that I’m looking forward to donating again.”

During the Be Somebody ... Bring Somebody campaign both current and new donors to Michigan Blood will receive a Michigan Blood Club T-shirt.  Returning donors who bring along someone new to Michigan Blood will not only get the shirt, but a chance to win an adventure package from one of four popular family-fun destinations, thanks to generous donations from:

  • Zehnder’s Splash Village Hotel and Water Park (Frankenmuth, MI):  Splashtastic Getaway Package for family of four, includes two nights lodging,  waterpark passes, Zehnder’s all you can eat chicken dinner, (2) breakfast buffets and one “pizza party”  

  • Frederic Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park (Grand Rapids):  Family membership, plus two tickets to any concert in the 2014 outdoor concert series

  • Great Wolf Lodge (Traverse City): One night in family suite, 4 water park passes

Dates and times vary by donor center location:

Grand Rapids, 1036 Fuller NE
Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, August 27-29: 8 am – 7 pm
Friday, August 30: 8 am – 4 pm

Grandville Donor Center, Grandville United Methodist Church, 3140 Wilson Avenue
Wednesday and Thursday, August 28 & 29: 10 am – 7 pm

Kalamazoo Area Donor Center, 524 E. Milham, Portage
Wednesday August 28 and Thursday 29: 11am-7pm
Friday, August 30: 8am-4pm

Saint Joseph Donor Center, 2710 Cleveland Avenue
Tuesday, August 27: 11 am – 7 pm

Saginaw Donor Center, 1771 Tittabawassee Road
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday August 27-29: 8 am – 7 pm
Friday, August 30: 8 am – 3:30 pm 

Bay City Donor Center, 1017 North Johnson
Wednesday and Thursday, August 28 & 29: 12 -7 pm
Friday, August 30: 8 am – 3:30 pm

Dow Diamond Donor Center, 825 Main Street
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, August 27-30:  7:30 am – 3 pm

Midland Donor Center at MidMichigan Medical Center, 4005 Orchard Drive
Tuesday, August 27: 12-7 pm
Friday, August 30: 8 am – 3:30 pm 

Traverse City Donor Center, 2575 Aero Park Drive
Tuesday and Thursday, August 27 & 29, 10:30 am – 6 pm
Wednesday and Friday, August 28 & 30: 8 am – 3:30 pm

Appointments are recommended for donor convenience.

Walk-ins are welcome. To schedule an appointment, call 1-866-miblood (642-5663) or click

Any healthy person 17 or older (or 16 with parental consent) who weighs at least 110 pounds may be eligible to give blood every 56 days.  Blood donors should bring photo ID (or two forms of non-photo ID). For additional information on donating blood, check out