ST. PAUL — During Breast Cancer Awareness Month this October, the American Red Cross urges eligible donors to give blood or platelets to provide hope and healing to patients fighting cancer.

Breast cancer is the second most common cancer in women, and more than 268,000 women are expected to be diagnosed with breast cancer this year.

Donors of all blood types, especially platelet donors and those with type O blood, are needed to ensure a stable supply for cancer patients and others this fall. Appointments can be made by downloading the free Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enabling the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device.

As a thank-you, those who come to give blood or platelets during the month of October will automatically be entered for a chance to win one of five $500 gift cards redeemable at hundreds of merchants, courtesy of Tango Card. Terms apply; see rcblood.org/game.

Local donation places and times

Owatonna

Wednesday, Oct. 16 from 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. at Buffalo Wild Wings, 1100 Frontage Road

Friday, Oct. 18 from 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. at Famous Dave's, 4355 W. Frontage Road

Monday, Oct. 21 from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. at Driessen Culligan, 110 W. Fremont St.

Monday, Oct. 28 from 1 - 6 p.m., Trinity Lutheran Church, 609 S. Lincoln Ave.

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