DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Sept. 11, 2020) – On September 9 and 10, Watkins Glen International's R.A.C.E. Foundation joined The NASCAR Foundation to deliver 40 Speedy Bears on National Teddy Bear Day to young patients at Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo and Golisano Children’s Hospital in Rochester. This was part of a larger effort on behalf of the Foundation that delivered more than 1,000 bears to nearly 40 hospitals and clinics across the U.S. in Alabama, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Nevada, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Tennessee and Virginia.
"Off the track, Watkins Glen International continues to share our support for children and families in our local community through the R.A.C.E. Foundation," said WGI President Michael Printup. "We are always proud to support the annual Speedy Bear Brigade with The NASCAR Foundation as it provides great moments for these heroic children to embrace the comfort of a new lifelong Speedy Bear."
NASCAR Drivers also participated in the initiative by recording a special video message for kids who received the bears, including: NASCAR Cup Series drivers Austin Dillon, John Hunter Nemechek and Tyler Reddick; NASCAR Xfinity Series drivers Justin Allgaier, Ross Chastain, Austin Cindric, Noah Gragson and Ryan Vargas; NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series drivers Cassie Gannis, Jennifer Jo Cobb and Natalie Decker; and, Rev Racing driver Isabella Robusto.
"This is our fourth year partnering with hospitals across the country to bring some comfort and joy to their pediatric patients," stated Nichole Krieger, Executive Director of The NASCAR Foundation. "This program is so uplifting, but especially this year, we hope the bears will bring big smiles during what can be a very stressful and emotional time."
"Golisano Children’s Hospital appreciates the support that the NASCAR Foundation has given to the children over these past years," Wendy Lane, Child Life Coordinator at UR Medicine Golisano Children’s Hospital said. "Even though we had COVID-19 restrictions, Watkins Glen International stayed committed to the children and showed up with a donation of Speedy Bears for us to give to the children. Although we miss the excitement of the racing tracks and cars, we truly value the support from NASCAR for bringing the bears for the children to enjoy. These bears will provide some comfort and joy during their stay."
Since the Speedy Bear Brigade began in 2017, the nationwide program has delivered nearly 4,000 teddy bears to sick children at more than 80 hospitals. For more information about The NASCAR Foundation, its programs or how to donate, please visit www.NASCARfoundation.org.
About The NASCAR Foundation
The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing Inc. (NASCAR) established The NASCAR Foundation in January 2006 to support initiatives that positively affect the lives of children throughout the United States. The 501(c) (3) non-profit entity partners with medical experts and other charitable organizations to fund children’s health care programs. The NASCAR Foundation has cumulatively donated more than $36 million to reach more than one million children. For more information on The NASCAR Foundation, visit NASCARfoundation.org. Follow The NASCAR Foundation on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/NASCARFoundation or on Twitter at @NASCAR_FDN.
About Watkins Glen International
Located within five (5) hours (~300 miles) of 25% of the US population, Watkins Glen International is the premier road racing facility in North America, four-times voted “Best NASCAR Track” by readers of USA Today. Keep up with The Glen on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. For tickets, camping, and additional information, call 1-866-461-RACE or visit www.TheGlen.com.