Show time! It’s MDA’s single largest fundraising event of the year, and also a prime opportunity to raise public awareness of the battle against ALS.
On Sept. 6 and 7, on 180 MDA “Love Network” stations around the country, individuals and families affected by ALS will be profiled to personalize their stories for viewers in their communities.
On the national broadcast starring Jerry Lewis, originating once again from the South Point Hotel, Casino & Spa in Las Vegas, MDA ALS Division Co-Chairs Augie and Lynne Nieto of Corona del Mar, Calif., will share their experience of living with ALS, and the fight for a cure.
Fitness industry pioneer/entrepreneur Augie Nieto, 51, learned he has ALS in March 2005. The Nietos were the driving force behind MDA’s Augie’s Quest, which supports ALS research through fundraising events across the country.
As always, the 21½-hour Telethon offers up an array of entertainment talent, beginning at 9 p.m. EDT Sunday, Sept. 6.
Celebrity co-hosts include television personality Jann Carl; Grammy-winner Billy Gilman; Nancy O’Dell (“Access Hollywood”); Alison Sweeney (“Days of Our Lives” and “The Biggest Loser”); and award-winning vocalist Ace Young. Popular TV host Tom Bergeron (“Dancing with the Stars” and “America’s Funniest Home Videos”) also will be featured.
Included in a long list of talent are Dolly Parton, Lee Greenwood, Tony Orlando, Terry Fator, Train, Penn and Teller, Wynonna, Carlos Peña (Tampa Bay Rays), Brandon Barash (“General Hospital”), Five for Fighting and more.
Interspersed with entertainers’ performances, the Telethon will offer firsthand accounts from MDA-supported researchers about scientific investigations now under way to defeat ALS and other neuromuscular diseases. The Telethon also provides an opportunity to recognize national sponsors who raise funds year-round for MDA research and service programs.
Viewers can check local listings or consult the MDA Web site to find their local Telethon broadcast station. The Telethon also can be viewed online at www.mda.org/telethon/2009telethon, thanks to streaming video provided by RealNetworks.