18th Annual AIDS Lifewalk and Festival to benefit the 20,000 people in Dallas living with HIV/AIDS

Approx. 5,000 people expected to participate in one of North Texas’ top fundraisers for local AIDS services

What:      18th AAIDS Arms Logonnual AIDS LifeWalk Approximately 5,000 corporations, civic, religious and neighborhood groups and individuals are expected to participate in this year’s 5K Fun Run/Walk. Following the walk, a festival in Lee Park will take place featuring live music, concessions with food, beer, & wine, vendors, information booths, and a ‘kids area’ complete with a bounce house, balloon clown, face painters, and dunking booths – all to raise money for AIDS clinics/testing. The LifeWalk raffle drawing will conclude the event. The honorary co-chairs for the 18th Annual LifeWalk are Del Shores and Jason Dottley.

Del Shores is the writer/director/executive producer of “Sordid Lives: The Series” now airing on MTV’s LOGO channel. He wrote, directed and produced the movie “Sordid Lives” based on his award-winning play and wrote and executive produced the film adaptation of his play “Daddy’s Dyin’…Who’s Got The Will”. For television he wrote for and executive produced the American version of “Queer as Folk” and wrote and produced for “Dharma and Greg”, “Mr. & Mrs. Smith” and “Ned and Stacey”. His plays have won NAACP, GLAAD, LA Drama Critics and countless other awards and have been produced in over 2,000 theatres world-wide. Jason Dottley is currently starring as “Ty Williamson” in Del Shores’ “Sordid Lives: The Series”. Dottley stars with icons Olivia Newton-John and Rue McClanahan, as well as noted pros Bonnie Bedelia, Beth Grant, Caroline Rhea and Leslie Jordan. As a producer, Dottley is the President of Del Shores Productions. Currently they have partnered with Funny Boy Films to produce the film adaptation of Shores’ GLAAD Award-winner “Southern Baptist Sissies”. Delta Burke and Leslie Jordan are head-lining with the filming planned for 2008. Dottley will work as an actor on the project as well. This year our goal is to raise $380,000. To date LifeWalk has raised and distributed more than $7 million for AIDS services throughout the Dallas community. LifeWalk is a program of AIDS Arms, Inc., the largest AIDS service organization in North Texas.

When:     Sunday, October 5, 2008. Registration starts at noon; Walk at 1 p.m.; Festival will take place from noon to 6:00 p.m.

Where:    Lee Park, 3400 Turtle Creek Blvd., Dallas TX 75219 (Turtle Creek Blvd. @ Lemmon Ave.)

Details:   AIDS Arms serves about 2,700 clients each month.  30% of AIDS Arms clients are women.  72% are ethnic minority (55% Black; 16% Hispanic; 1% Other). 45% are gay. 16% of younger than 18 years old. Funds raised will also benefit other AIDS service groups: Greg Dollgener Memorial AIDS Fund, Legal Hospice of Texas, Resource Center of Dallas, and The Women’s Chorus of Dallas. In Dallas, there are approximately 20,000 people living with HIV/AIDS, and more than 1,000 new infections are discovered each year.  Nearly 20,000 people have died in Dallas from AIDS since 1984. Dallas has one of the fastest growing infection rates among young people in the United States, and leads the state of Texas in new HIV infections. More than one million people in the United States are living with HIV/AIDS, with approximately 40,000 new infections each year.

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AIDS Arms representatives will be on hand to provide interviews. A number of local and statewide elected officials will also attend the event. Visit www.lifewalk.org for more information.

Media Contact: Cooper Smith
cooper@coopersmithagency.com, (214) 329-9191