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You folks have cost me a lot of sleep the last couple years. And I love you for it.

That’s because at each of the last two MLB Trade Deadlines, your support of Bleacher Nation forced me to blog for 24 hours straight at the 2011 deadline, and then for 30 hours straight at the 2012 deadline. Those Blogathon events raised money to help run this here site, and I left each experience overwhelmed by your support, your energy, your participation, and your eagerness to watch me wilt in a sleep-deprived pile of goo.

I also left each experience feeling unbelievably blessed to be able to write at Bleacher Nation as a full-time job, and be a part of such a special community. We’ve developed a nice little corner of the Cubs’ online world, and I feel very privileged to be a part of it.

Because I have been so blessed by your support, and because we have all been blessed to be part of a very cool community, I think we should use this year’s BN Trade Deadline Blogathon fundraiser to do some real, tangible good out there. Specifically, I’m asking you to help give children special, Chicago Cubs-related wishes.

MAWF  Primary Logo PMS293

This year, Bleacher Nation is partnering with Make-A-Wish® Illinois. The mission of Make-A-Wish is to grant the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. Make-A-Wish cannot accomplish that mission without the help and support of others, and that’s where you come in. Together, our goal this month is to sponsor the wish of a young Chicago Cubs fan.

I’m going to do a Blogathon at the Trade Deadline, but it’s up to you to really get me there. So let’s make a deal.

I’ll commit right now to blogging for 24 hours straight leading up to the Trade Deadline on July 31. No breaks. No sleep. Constant coverage. Writing. Tweeting. Commenting. Kvetching. The run-up to the deadline is among the most important times in the baseball season, and I intend to go crazy covering everything out there during the BN Blogathon. You’re getting 24 hours right now, guaranteed.

But who wants 24 hours when you can have 30 hours? Or 36 hours?

If you folks collectively donate $6,000 – the cost of sponsoring a child’s wish – by July 30, I’ll step that 30 hours straight. And if you really dig deep, and we go over that $6,000 mark, I’ll tack on an additional hour for every $1,000 you generous folks donate. Although I’m going to cap the Blogathon at 36 hours (which would be a total of $12,000 raised – the cost of two wishes), there’s no limit on the amount we can raise together. Every dollar raised will go straight to Make-A-Wish with the intention that it be used to grant a wish to a child who wishes for an experience related to the Chicago Cubs. We all love the Cubs, and it would be pretty amazing to help a child do something that will deepen his/her own love of the Cubs.

It’s up to you to make this happen.

Here’s how you donate: go to the BN Blogathon fundraiser page, and make your donation there.

Make-A-Wish is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization, so, to the extent you were wondering, financial contributions may be deductible for federal income tax purposes. Just throwing that out there.

This is win-win for you, my friends. By giving whatever you can, you not only help change the life of a fellow Chicago Cubs fan, but you also ensure ridiculous, over-the-top coverage at the Trade Deadline. Seeing if I can make it to 30 or 36 hours without posting pictures of cats dressed as unicorns is just a bonus.

I know that some of you will still want to use the Blogathon as a mechanism to support Bleacher Nation, and I thank you very much in advance for your spirit. But let’s save the dollars for Make-A-Wish and young Cubs fans. If you still want to support this site directly as you have in the past, you can do so without any money at all. You could tell your friends and family about this fundraiser. You could spread the word about it on Twitter or Facebook. You could finally follow BN on Twitter or like it on Facebook, and tell your Cubs fan friends to do the same thing. You can help make this fundraiser hugely successful for a special young Cubs fan, and you would be helping Bleacher Nation in the process just like you have in the past. Let’s spread the word about this fundraiser, and make it a huge success.

  • Rich

    Love it Brett…..

    I am in to help you reach the goals!

    • waittilthisyear

      threw down my lunch money for the week bud. (beer funds are in tact)

  • Internet Random

    You rule, man.

  • jh03

    This is awesome, Brett. You’re awesome.

  • JulioZuleta

    Awesome.

    Try to put a little into the pot if you can, guys. Brett works his ass off to give us round-the-clock Cubs coverage for free. So many sites out there charge for content these days. Give back a little bit by donating. Think about it, would you rather spend that $10 bucks on a lukewarm Bud Light at a Cubs game, or a sick kid live out a Cubs-dream.

  • Fishin Phil

    It has been wonderful watching the growth of this community. Count me in!

    • Cubbie Blues

      Ditto.

  • cerambam

    Brett, I had already planned to donate to support Bleacher Nation as I did last year, but I have to say this is one mighty good idea. I applaud it and thank you for all of your work. I just donated, and now I’m going to go buy a T-shirt because you’re awesome.

    People who are not sure about donating, think about how much content Brett provides and how even the little bit can help. I never donate a lot, because I can’t exactly afford to, but this is a good a cause as any.

    Support Make a Wish, Bleacher Nation and Brett all at once? No question.

  • TWC

    I’m impressed, Ace, but not surprised. Well done.

    • Cubbie Blues

      Ditto.

      • baldtaxguy

        This. Very awesome.

    • Jim

      This is so selfless, well done Brett. I still think we all could pick up a t-shirt or two to help advertise on the day, no?

  • JoeyCollins

    I’ve been curious what this announcement was going to be since you first mentioned it, and this is way cooler than i could have guessed. I’ll be right with you during the blog-a-thon as long as I can Brett, telling everyone I can to help and donate, as well as enjoy the coverage you provide. I love this site and the community that frequents it, and this is something I’ll be proud to help out with.

  • DReese

    This is fantastic! I am so glad to have BN!

    Brett… you da man

  • UCF

    This is a great thing Brett.

  • Spencer

    So very cool.

  • hansman1982

    [img]http://thebubble.com.ar/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/clap.gif[/img]

  • Idaho Razorback

    Brett, Do I need to donate to the Make a Wish Illinois chapter or can I donate to my local chapter?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I believe you can donate to any of those options that you’re given, though we’re technically partnering with MAW Illinois on sponsoring a Cubs fan’s wish (i.e., they are going to work to find a child with a Cubs-related wish, and dedicate the funds they receive from this fundraiser to making that specific wish happen).

    • UCF

      I wondered the same thing…but given I live way out west there probably aren’t a whole lot of kids asking for wishes relating to the Cubs. So, I donated to the Illinois chapter.

  • wkranz54

    Proud to be a Cubs fan today! Way to go BN!

  • Katie

    Well done Brett! I’m in for sure!

  • mysterious4th

    Brett, you are AWESOME! Make- a-Wish is amazing!

  • cubchymyst

    I hope your ready for the 36 hours.

    • DReese

      agree

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Nothing would make me happier.

      • hansman1982

        Yes, watching you slip the surly bonds of sanity come hour 30 will be the cherry on top of the sprinkles on top of the whipped cream on top of the ice cream filled chocolate chip cookie.

        • Stinky Pete

          I think video clips of anything after 30 hours would be the peak of excellence in sports journalism.

  • Idaho Razorback

    Thanks, I will donate to the Illinois chapter.

  • pjboy9

    Borrowing (and then tweaking) a jingle from an old commercial….I’m a Cub fan and a Bleacher Nation man! Great idea Brett. Wouldn’t have expected anything different from you. I’m in.

  • RWakild

    My nephew got a wish of visiting the Cubs through make a wish. He and his family had a wonderful day thanks to this charity and I have a 18×13 picture hanging on my wall of Sammy Sosa and my nephew Tim. This is a great charity and will be giving myself. Thanks, Brett.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      That’s awesome, RW. Thank you for sharing that. Shows the impact MAW can have.

  • http://www.cwsnaturally.com Evolution

    Bring it and sing it, Handsome! I’m all in…

  • Cyranojoe

    Pretty damn cool, Brett. :D

  • Sweetjamesjones

    Great idea Brett!!!

  • Patrick

    What a classy thing to do. You’re going to make some sick kid very happy.

  • BRANT BROWN

    Awesome Brett just pure awesomeness

  • Freshness21

    Awesome, Brett! May I also suggest you keep some sort of coffee/Red Bull counter going during the marathon?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Always do, actually!

  • Mikelach13

    Brett, Great idea! A small price to pay to help a child and for the incredible Cubs coverage you provide!

  • Ben (BG2383)

    I will give what I can. Awesome idea to give it to Make A Wish

  • miggy80

    Ace, I can’t tell you how good of an idea this is!

    When I was a foster parent Make-a-Wish granted a trip for one my foster kids and her sister. Since then I’m always looking for a ways to give back to the organization and this is another perfect way to give back.

    Let’s do this bleacher nation!

  • PRcajun

    Great job, Brett! Count on a donation from the Cajun this year…it’d be great if one of the beat writers could plug this to increase visibility and, more importantly, increase donations for MAW. I’m rooting for you Brett (and for all of BN’ers to donate)!!! MAKE ALL THE WISHES!!!

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