The battle is on! Here's your chance to save lives while supporting those who do the same on a daily basis. Grand Junction fire and law enforcement agencies are competing to see who can generate the most blood drive donations. This is where you come in.

When you donate blood at the St. Mary's Advanced Medical Pavilion between May 14 and 25, 2018, you can cast your vote and help determine a winner.

What's in it for the winner? The agency with the most votes receives a trophy and a $500 donation to the charity of their choice. How about that?

To date, I've done a hundred posts about donating blood in Grand Junction. Personally, I donate every ten weeks. Trust me, I have no more love for needles than the next guy. That having been said, I give you my solemn word, donating is quick, easy, and almost totally painless.

You're probably saying to yourself, "What do you mean 'almost totally' painless?" Okay, the part where they poke your finger to check your blood type is kind of a drag. That's no fun. At the same time, it's really no big deal.

Donating blood takes only a few minutes. You answer a couple of questions, most of which don't apply to you or anyone you've ever met. Some questions inquire about diseases you've never heard of. Others ask if you've been involved with a prostitute anywhere in outer Mongolia on a Wednesday anytime between 1976 and December of 1979, excluding the month of March 1978.

Donating blood is awesome. Supporting Grand Junction police and firefighters is awesome. Donate, and you'll feel awesome.

The St. Mary's Regional Blood Center at 750 Wellington Avenue is open Monday through Friday, from 8 a..m. to 5:30 p.m. and on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. You do not need to call ahead. If you would like to call, the number is 970-298-2555.