General Business

One-Year Countdown To The 2020 Donate Life Transplant Games In New Jersey

Details, Preparations Revealed as Countdown to Celebration of Life in July 2020 Begins

Officials from New Providence-based NJ Sharing Network recently announced details and preparations for the 2020 Donate Life Transplant Games, marking the one-year countdown until the Opening Ceremonies.

Next summer, New Jersey will welcome its most inspiring event – the Transplant Games of America— July 17-22, 2020. More than 12,000 people from all 50 states, Puerto Rico and beyond, including Canada, Australia, Brazil and India, will travel to New Jersey to unite and raise awareness of organ, eye and tissue donation and transplantation.

The New Jersey Meadowlands Community will host the Transplant Games, a multi-sport festival for individuals who have undergone life-saving transplant surgeries. Celebrating its 30th anniversary, the 2020 Donate Life Transplant Games will be like none other, with an expected 12,000-15,000 transplant recipients, living donors, donor families, transplant professionals, caregivers, supporters and volunteers expected to attend.

Produced by the Transplant Life Foundation, the six-day event will feature 20 competitions and more than 40 special events and programs. The Games are open to transplant recipients, living donors, donor families and family, friends and supporters.

Sporting events will highlight intense competitions among 44 teams who pursue gold, silver and bronze medals. Competitions will include a 5K Run/Walk, Badminton, Ballroom Dancing, Basketball, Bowling, Cornhole, Cycling, Darts, Golf, Lyrics for Life (singing competition), Pickleball, Swimming, Table Tennis, Tennis, Texas Hold’em Poker, Track & Field, Trivia Challenge, Volleyball, Virtual Triathlon and Youth Olympiad.

An array of special events and activities designed to honor the gift of life will be held concurrently with the competitions, including an Opening Ceremony, Donor Tribute, Workshops/Seminars, Welcome Reception, Quilt Display, Live! From the TGA broadcasts, Living Donor Celebration, Quarter Century Club Dinner, Transplant Expo, TGA Village, Quilt Pinning Ceremony, and the 2020 Awards and 2022 Launch Party.

“We are so proud to stand here today with our partners at NJ Sharing Network as we kick off the one-year countdown to the Donate Life Transplant Games,” said Bill Ryan, CEO of the Transplant Life Foundation. “As an outstanding leader in the transplant community, NJ Sharing Network’s efforts in all areas is marked by excellence, innovation, rigor and heart. What we will host with them and our other partners in the NJ/NY Metro area next summer will be nothing short of amazing,” said Ryan.

Ryan added that the Meadowlands offers top-level facilities and unparalleled access to the greater metro New York area. As such, it will attract national and local media, and offer a myriad of transportation and logistical options and conveniences.

“Here at the Sharing Network, every day is a celebration of life, but July 18, 2020 will be a celebration like none other,” said Joe Roth, President and CEO of NJ Sharing Network. “Imagine over 12,000 people coming here from around the world simply because their lives have been touched by organ, eye and tissue donation. They will embrace our entire transplant community – healthcare providers, recipients, donors, donor families, patients waiting for transplants, and other supporters – as they demonstrate the strength, courage and triumph over adversity that is the Donate Life Transplant Games.”

Transplant Games of America is also working with the Greater Newark Convention & Visitors Bureau, the New Jersey Performing Arts Center and Prudential Center to host the Donor Family Tribute Ceremony and Opening Ceremonies respectively—all of which will showcase to visitors what makes New Jersey so special.

Lead partners include NJ Sharing Network, Novartis Pharmaceuticals, Hackensack Meridian Health, RWJBarnabas Health, American Dream and the Meadowlands Live! Convention & Visitors Bureau.

During a six-day stay, attendees will use area hotel accommodations and public transportation and visit restaurants, landmarks and attractions. And, for the first time, the Games will be held in a public space in the middle of one of the busiest intersections in the country – American Dream located at the Meadowlands.

“Hosting the Transplant Games, ‘live from the Meadowlands,’ home of world-renowned major sporting events, will not only showcase the incredible competitors but it will elevate the awareness and importance of organ, eye and tissue donation advancing the Donate Life cause. The countdown is on, we are extremely honored and proud to be a partner of the 2020 Games and excited that we are now less than a year away,” said Jim Kirkos, President and CEO of Meadowlands Regional Chamber.

Today there are 115,000 individuals in the United States waiting for a life-saving transplant, and nearly 4,000 are waiting in New Jersey. Nationwide, 20 people die each day waiting for a transplant.

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