Dragon*Con, held annually over Labor Day weekend in Atlanta, GA, is North America's largest annual science fiction and popular arts convention, but it is much more. Each year Dragon*Con selects a charity to benefit from an auction held during the convention. This year’s charity is the Georgia Chapter of the Lupus Foundation of America.
The Lupus Foundation of America (LFA) is the nation's leading nonprofit voluntary health organization dedicated to finding the causes of and cure for lupus and providing support and services to all people affected by lupus. Locally, the Georgia Chapter serves the 55,000 Georgians living with lupus with awareness and educational programs. Nationally, the Lupus Foundation of America supports research into the causes of lupus and the development of new treatments to improve the quality of life for people with lupus.
Lupus is an autoimmune disease that can vary in severity from mild to very serious. It can affect any part of the body, though it most commonly affects the skin, joints, and internal organs. Normally, our immune system responds to foreign ―invaders, such as bacteria and viruses, by producing antibodies. In lupus, the immune system can’t tell the difference between a true threat and its own tissue. The body then creates autoantibodies, which attack healthy tissue, causing pain, inflammation, and damage to the affected part of the body.
Lupus can strike anyone of any age. It is more common in women than men, and more common among people of color. An estimated 1.5 to 2 million Americans are believed to have lupus – more than the number affected by multiple sclerosis, cystic fibrosis, cerebral palsy, sickle cell anemia, leukemia, and HIV combined. Because the symptoms vary so much, many people go years before receiving a diagnosis.
The cause of lupus is unknown and there is no cure. However, it is highly treatable with medication and most patients are able to lead a normal life.
The Dragon*Con Charity Auction will take place Sunday, September 5th from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Regency V Ballroom of the Atlanta Hyatt Regency Hotel. Items up for bid include memorabilia donated by Dragon*Con guests, artwork, signed books, and comics- related items. The Georgia Aquarium has donated four passes to the aquarium’s behind the scenes tour, valued at $280. All bidders must check in to receive a paddle to be used to bid during the auction.
The auction will be followed at 4 p.m. by the Stargate Multiverse Track auction, featuring memorabilia, props, and artwork from the Stargate film and television series. The proceeds of the Stargate auction also benefit the Georgia Chapter of the Lupus Foundation of America.
Over the past three years, Dragon*Con’s charity auctions have raised over $75,000 for charities including the American Diabetes Association, the American Heart Association, and the Alzheimer’s Association.
Additional information about the charity auction can be found at http://www.dragoncon.org/charity.php. Ticketing and other convention information can be found at www.dragoncon.org.
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