The Oklahoma Blood Institute in Ardmore is running a few winter blood drives, but their latest is really bringing the Thunder.
The Oklahoma City Thunder holds an annual Holiday Assist Blood Drive with the Oklahoma Blood Institute. Donors who come to the Shops at Ardmore to give blood from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on December 27 will be entered into a drawing for two Oklahoma City Thunder tickets and a hotel stay. Donors will also get a free long-sleeved Thunder T-shirt. Account Consultant Brandi Jones said the drive is one of many slated for December, intended to meet a rising need for blood donations during the winter months.
“We have been really blessed, it’s going really well,” Jones said. “Everyone’s been coming in, the weather has been cooperating. Last year, it impacted our drive.”
Another blood drive t-shirt, which is long-sleeved, red and bears the image of a truck, will be available through December 30. Another shirt, which is blue and sports a truck and a dog, is also available.
Jones said that weather doesn’t just dissuade donators from leaving the house. It also effects when and where mobile drives can be held, and how quickly donated blood can be transported.
“We’ve had to cancel drives in the past, and schools shut down,” Jones said. “We go through 1,200 pints a day in Oklahoma and even through bad weather, we need to keep that stocked.”
On rare occasions, if blood donations have spiked and blood banks have more than they need, donation centers can pause donations. Jones said she’s never seen that happen during her time at the Ardmore location.