Festival Blood Drive Monday

United Blood Service’s Anne Laughlin hosted a luncheon at Fezzo’s Restaurant on Wednesday to thank those who helped her organize the International Rice Festival Community Blood Drive, which is being held on Monday at the International Rice Festival Building. From the left are 77th International Rice Festival President Romona Credeur, Laughlin, Dwayne Fulton (Falcon Rice Mill), Robbie Trahan (Falcon Rice Mill), Volunteer Blood Drive Coordinator Mike Pastor and Tom Dew (Falcon Rice Mill).
At the International Rice Festival Bldg., 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Area residents will have the opportunity to celebrate life and the Rice Festival festivities by joining in the annual International Rice Festival community blood drive. The drive will be held Monday, Oct. 14, from 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. inside the Rice Festival Building, located at 717 West Mill Street. 

“To tie the Rice Festival and a blood drive together just makes sense given the love of good times and of helping others that so many people here in south Louisiana have,” said Anne Laughlin of United Blood Services. “This event has gone on for over a decade and is always one of our biggest drives.” 

During a lunch Wednesday at Fezzo’s, Laughlin wanted to be sure to recognize Volunteer Blood Drive Coordinator Mike Pastor. With the donation Pastor plans to give on Monday, he will have given over 160 pints of blood since he began donating over 40 years ago. That will equal over 21 gallons of blood he has donated through the years. 

“We are very fortunate to have such a passionate coordinator,” said Laughlin. 

Also present at the lunch were 77th International Rice Festival President Romona Credeur, sponsors Robbie Trahan and Dwayne Fulton of Falcon Rice Mill, Pastor and longtime Falcon employee Tom Dew.  

It takes 250 blood donations every day to meet the needs of area patients and to be ready for emergencies. Donors must be at least 16, weigh at least 110 pounds and be in good health. 

In keeping with the history of the Rice Festival blood drive, this drive is dedicated to the memory of Bill Williams and Shel Kanter, both of whom were firm believers in donating blood.

Each blood donation can help save three lives. Blood donated here helps save the lives of patients in Acadia parish as well as 32 other South Louisiana parishes.  

Every participant will receive, while supplies last.

• A black and gold football T-shirt.

• A bag of rice from Falcon Rice Mill, Inc., a long-time sponsor of the blood drive.

• The first 100 participants will receive a ride bracelet donated by Reed Exposition Midways.

For more information, call 337-739-4978. To schedule your appointment to donate go to www.bloodhero.com and use sponsor code: IRF. 

Donors need to bring a photo ID and the list of any medications that they are currently taking also.