New York Red Bulls

Red Bulls to Host 10th Annual Autism Acceptance Match Presented by Hackensack Meridian Health on Saturday, April 13 at Red Bull Arena

April 2, 2024 - Major League Soccer (MLS)
New York Red Bulls News Release

HARRISON, N.J. - New York Red Bulls announced today the 10th annual Autism Acceptance Match presented by Hackensack Meridian Health on Saturday, April 13 at 7:30 p.m. when the Red Bulls host the Chicago Fire at Red Bull Arena. For every ticket purchased HERE the club will donate $3.00 to Autism CAN.

Autism CAN (Care Access Navigate) is a philanthropic initiative supporting Hackensack Meridian Health's mission to provide families with the highest quality care, trusted resources and specialized environments sensitive to the unique needs of children on the autism spectrum and their families.

"As our organization approaches the 10th year of coming together for Autism Acceptance, we are proud to once again partner with Hackensack Meridian Health, who continue to make significant strides within the autism community," said Marc de Grandpré, President, New York Red Bulls. "With 1 in 36 children being impacted by autism, building acceptance to help improve the quality of life for those affected by autism and their families is as important as ever. On April 13, Red Bull Arena will provide a comforting, safe and fun experience for all. We genuinely appreciate the support and love from our Red Members, club partners and the entire community as we unite to further autism acceptance and inclusion."

"We are delighted to be partnering with the Red Bulls for another Autism Acceptance Night at Red Bull Arena this year," said Michelle Breaud, manager of Hackensack Meridian Children's Health Autism Program. "With New Jersey bearing one of the highest autism rates nationwide, Hackensack Meridian Health's dedication to enhancing care through accessibility and much-needed resources is unwavering, and we are grateful that part of the proceeds raised at the match will support our autism services. We extend our heartfelt appreciation to the Red Bulls for hosting what we know will be an enjoyable evening for those observing Autism Acceptance Month."

In 2017, Red Bull Arena became both the first MLS and NY/NJ sports & entertainment venue to have a permanent sensory room. The room is available for all families impacted by autism for no additional charge during all home matches.

The club's commitment to autism acceptance also includes The de Grandpré Family Grant for Autism Programs. Inspired by Julia de Grandpré, the grant was formed by the club and awards $5,000 to organizations whose work impacts families of loved ones on the autism spectrum.

Activations will include:

Hackensack Meridian Health branded sensory sacks will be available at guest services and include: noise cancelling headphones, poppers, stress balls, and wristbands with their specific seating information.

The first 7,500 fans will receive Pop It key chains upon ingress, compliments of Hackensack Meridian Health,

The Arato Brothers will perform at The CrossBar at Red Bull Arena beginning at 5:30pm. The NJ-based group is made up of four siblings (with member Darwin-Miguel "Miggy" Arato diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder).

Music will not be played at the BULLevard from 4:30pm - 5:30pm; music will be lowered from 5:30pm to the start of the match at 7:30pm.

Music volume and PA announcer will be lowered throughout the match.

The USA national anthem will be performed by Sarah Kaufman, an autistic musical theatre writer and performer based in New York City.

The Guest DJ at Red Bull Arena will be Blake Rouen, aka "DJ Blake", a junior at Moorestown High School who is on the spectrum.

A Quiet Zone will be located at a Hospitality Bay on the Plaza Level of Red Bull Arena.

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