The competition gets a little bloody. But that’s exactly the point of the HEB Blood Drive Challenge. For the last eight years, right around the July 4th holiday, Central Texas HEB stores have competed for the community’s blood. In fact, the two-week drive series was created to give the community blood supply a boost during a time when holiday travel is up – and donations are historically down. So far, it’s done a heck of a job. All 18 HEB stores in the region compete to see which location draws the most blood. HEB Manager Bonnie Erlanson is a force behind the series. She believes in the mission – and she loves a good competition. In fact, the entire Texas-based supermarket chain is known for its competitive spirit. “We love to compete at HEB,” says Erlanson. “Our partners, our customers and their spirit of giving back are what make this drive so successful. We know it helps our communities; our neighbors. We know that any one of us at any time could be touched by the need for blood.”
Erlanson’s drive day was Wednesday. Posters were up and employees were prepared to give. Even the construction crew working in the store were recruited. All is fair in blood wars.
Today the Killeen and Corsicana stores are competing. Friday, it’s HEB Speight’s turn. And Saturday, HEB Hewitt/Woodway and Wooded Acres will close down the 8th annual Challenge. So which store gets the trophy this year? That’s anybody’s guess. But the real winners? The Central Texas patients who receive the blood, of course.