June 29, 2012
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. --- It's a two-sport double-team to combat New Mexico's wildfires.
The University of New Mexico football team and Albuquerque Isotopes baseball team are joining forces for the "New Mexico Fire Relief" campaign, a two-day drive to collect donations for The American Red Cross in New Mexico.
Members of both the UNM football team and the Isotopes will greet donors during a two-day event on July 6-7. Also, all Cumulus Media Albuquerque radio stations (92.3 KRST, 93.3 KOB-FM, 99.5 Magic FM, 103.3 eD-FM, 610 The Sports Animal, and 770 KKOB-AM) will take part, as will Red Cross volunteers.
The Lobo football team will hold its preseason training camp in Ruidoso for the third consecutive year in August as it prepares for its 2012 season opener against Southern University on Sept. 1 at University Stadium.
It was the UNM program's relationship with the village of Ruidoso that prompted the program to reach out to that community after the Little Bear fire broke out in early June.
UNM vice president for athletics Paul Krebs contacted the Albuquerque Isotopes to help the football program with the campaign. Together, the entities agreed to extend the offer of aid to the entire state of New Mexico.
"Giving back to the community and the state is a priority for the entire University of New Mexico athletic department," Krebs said." These fires are devastating to the state. This has really struck home with our football coaches and players as the Ruidoso community has embraced our fall camp."
The Isotopes held a drive-through donation campaign in 2011 for Haitian relief. That drive resulted in more than $20,000 raised.
"We are delighted to team up with Lobo football for such a great cause," said Isotopes general manager John Traub. "The devastation caused by wildfires throughout New Mexico has been heartbreaking, and hopefully we can provide a lift to those communities that are in so much need."
The American Red Cross in New Mexico will be in charge of directing how the donation money will be distributed in the relief effort. The American Red Cross in New Mexico helps families impacted by fire with food, clothing, shelters and prescription medicine. Financial donations will help support the Red Cross.
"Red Cross responds not only to wildfires, but virtually every day to a house fire where New Mexico families lose everything," said Cindy Adams, American Red Cross Regional Chief Executive Officer. "Donations from this event help the Red Cross respond to fire and other disasters."
The event will begin July 6 from noon-4 p.m. as the Lobos, the Red Cross and Cumulus Media volunteers will be on hand for a drive-through collection in the north parking lot of the Pit on Cesar Chavez Boulevard.
Lobos and Isotopes players also will assist with fundraising efforts outside the Isotopes Park gates two hours before the baseball team's 7:05 p.m. games Friday (Myron Noodleman Night) and Saturday (Postgame Fireworks Extravaganza) against Round Rock. Volunteers are scheduled to collect until 7:30 p.m.
For more information on the event, please contact Brian DeSpain or Michael Levy in the Lobo football office at 505-925-5700, Steve Hurlbert with the Albuquerque Isotopes at 505-222-4012, Alison Atwood at Cumulus Media at 505-767-6712 or Beverly Allen at the American Red Cross in New Mexico, 505-220-3097.
To donate money directly to the Red Cross, call 505-265-8514, go to www. RedCrossNewMexico.org or text RED CROSS to 90999. A $10 charge will be added to your phone bill.
Come meet the Lobos, Isotopes and radio all-stars while "pitching" in to help victims and "tackling" the damage caused by fire and other disasters in New Mexico.