HITS to Host Fundraiser for Leukemia & Lymphoma Society

Monday, May 17, 2010

Saugerties, NY - HITS, Inc., is pleased to join forces with the Upstate New York/Vermont Chapter of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society to host a fundraiser to support their mission to cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families.
On Friday, May 28 the $25,000 HITS Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health, will be a charitable class to benefit the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS). Riders will be asked to help raise money for the cause by gathering "sponsors" to pledge a donation for every clear jump they complete in Friday's feature class. Donations raised during the class will go directly to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society to provide funding for much-needed research and patient services.

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society is the world's largest voluntary health organization dedicated to funding blood cancer research, education and patient services. Since the first funding in 1954, LLS has awarded more than $680 million in research funding. An organization that has helped millions, the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society has also helped two families local to Ulster County, the home of HITS Corporate and the HITS-on-the-Hudson Show Series.

"We are glad to help raise awareness and funds for an organization that is helping families right here in Ulster County," said Tom Struzzieri, HITS President and CEO. "This charitable class is a way for us to help contribute to the cause by having some good fun at the horse show while raising awareness of this important cause. Our exhibitors like to support causes that do real help in assisting those in need, so this is a perfect match."

Zachary Swart of Saugerties, New York is eight years old, and was diagnosed with High Risk Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia on November 27, 2008. He received intense chemo treatment for the first nine months and is currently on maintenance chemotherapy, which includes daily oral medications and a monthly visit to Albany Medical Center for intravenous treatment. "We are eternally grateful for the amazing strides that have been made in ALL treatments. LLS helps to provide families and friends the means to fight for our loved ones who have been struck by this disease," said Zachary's mother, Nancy Swart.

Melissa Signor of Kingston, New York is a volunteer and is participating in her fifth TEAM in Training endurance event, a Century Ride (100 mile bike ride) that raises money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society each year. "This is a wonderful organization that touches the lives of people, very special people like my honored heroes, Zachary Swart and Debbie Kjellander. I've been volunteering for the past nine years and it is gratifying to know that the funds raised for research have provided treatments that are savings the lives of children, children like Zachary and providing patient support services to individuals like Debbie. While Debbie lost her battle with Leukemia in May of 2009, she came to believe in the work of the Leukemia Society. It was her wish that her own memorial funds be sent to the Leukemia Society because she knew first hand that the funds would be used to enrich the lives of other patients and families", said Signor.

"The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society relies on volunteers like Melissa, and on the generosity of organizations like HITS, to help us work towards our mission on finding cures," said Robyn Haberman Team In Training Campaign Director of the Upstate New York/Vermont Chapter for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. "We are grateful to them, and to all the riders participating to make this a success!"

For more information about Signor's honored heroes or to make a contribution, please visit: http://pages.teamintraining.org/uny/ambbr10/msignor. To learn more about Zach, please visit: www.caringbridge.org/visit/zacharyswart.

Friday's $25,000 HITS Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health, will take place at 2 pm at the HITS-on-the-Hudson show grounds in Saugerties, New York. In addition to being a fundraiser for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Friday's class will also be the first of 14 Pfizer $1 Grand Prix qualifiers offered this season at HITS Saugerties. For more information about the $25,000 HITS Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health, to benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society or to make a pledge for a particular rider, please contact Danette Kadlic at 845.246.8833 or via email Danette@HitsShows.com.

About the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Home Office is based in White Plains, NY. To learn more about us, use our Chapter Finder to find the LLS chapter in your area, or contact us via email or phone at (800) 955-4572. For general inquiries, the National Office mailing address is: The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society 1311 Mamaroneck Avenue, Suite 310, White Plains, NY 10605.

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's TEAM In Training®  (TNT) helps participants fight blood cancers while training them to cross the finish line of a major marathon, half marathon, triathlon or 100-mile century cycling event.

The Upstate New York/Vermont Chapter offers a variety of events and programs that make the TNT experience a memorable one. Our program provides experienced Coaches to help participants reach their fitness goals, and Mentors who provide encouragement and advice. When TNT participants meet their fundraising goal, the Society arranges airfare and lodging to the events. Participants train in honor of a local honored patient or survivor for motivation and inspiration along the way.

Our Fall 2010 Season will Kick Off in late May and they will be training teams for the following five events:
The Nation's Triathlon: Washington, DC, September 12, 2010
Adirondack Half Marathon: Schroon Lake, NY, September 26, 2010
Peak Season Century: Lake George, NY, October 2, 2010
Nike Women's Marathon: San Francisco, CA, October 17, 2010
Marine Corps Marathon: Washington, DC, October 31, 2010  

In order to qualify for the Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix, a rider must compete in eight or more HITS Grand Prix classes. The top 40 riders, based on money won by horse/rider combination, will be eligible to ride for the Pfizer Million. For more detailed information on the Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix, please visit our website at HitsShows.com.

HITS, Inc. produces high-quality, international-level hunter/jumper horse shows. Based in upstate New York in the village of Saugerties, HITS has been producing shows since 1982 and is now a nationwide company with world-class circuits in California, Florida, Arizona, New York and Virginia. In 2010, HITS will take the industry to new heights when it hosts the Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix in Saugerties on September 12.

For more information and a complete schedule of classes and events, visit www.HitsShows.com.