On Thursday, Aug. 1, from 6:30 to 9 a.m., the Buffalo Fire Department will hold its annual "Fill the Boot" program, with this year's proceeds going to the Spinal Muscular Atrophy Research Team, or SMART. The firefighters will be joined by Sabres forward Patrick Kaleta, former Sabres players Andrew Peters, Darryl Shannon and other Sabres alumni on eight separate corners throughout the City of Buffalo to collect funds for the program.
The B.F.D. will collect on the following corner sites:
1. Seneca and Bailey
2. Main and 198
3. End of the Skyway - Patrick Kaleta will arrive at 7:30 a.m.
4. Niagara St exit of the 190 - Andrew Peters will arrive at 7:30 a.m.
5. Elmwood and Hertel
6. Delaware and Hertel - Darryl Shannon will arrive at 7:30 a.m.
7. Elm and Swan
8. Oak and Genesee
Spinal muscular atrophy is a motor neuron disease. The motor neurons affect the voluntary muscles that are used for activities such as crawling, walking, head and neck control, and swallowing. Spinal muscular atrophy, or SMA, is the leading genetic cause of death among children less than 2 years old, affecting nearly 1 in 6,000 new births. One in approximately 35 people carries a copy of the gene that causes SMA.
SMART is a grass-roots organization working to raise awareness and financial support for targeted research aimed at finding treatments and ultimately cures for SMA and related neuromuscular diseases. Currently, SMART is funding the laboratory of a world-renowned physician-scientist at Johns Hopkins Medical Center who is working on novel research avenues that may lead to life-altering therapies for SMA.
SMART will hold its fifth annual SMART Celebration at First Niagara Center Saturday, Aug. 3, from 1-6 p.m.
For more information, visit www.smarthope.com.