COTA & Make-A-Wish create a boulevard of broken dreams
Austin, Texas (October 31, 2022) – Friday, October 21, not only marked the first day of the 2022 Formula One Aramco United States Grand Prix hosted by Circuit of The Americas but also created core memories for some of the youngest guests on campus. Among the fans stood two families both with exceptionally courageous and brave young men at their side: Wish Kid Damon and Wish Kid Alexander. Both Damon and Alexander have shown incredible resilience in the face of adversity, and are part of the life-changing foundation, Make-A-Wish of Central and South Texas.
Each family was greeted upon arrival by a Make-A-Wish Ambassador and a COTA representative to make their experience seamless. Damon’s and Alexander’s excitement was palpable. But upon uttering the words “Green Day,” both Wish Kids’ smiles transcended joy. They had wished for one thing: To witness four-time GRAMMY® award-winning American rock band, Green Day, give the performance of a lifetime.
As a true fan does, Damon arrived early and seemed to be on a mission as soon as he and his family arrived. He was lightly interested in seeing what the venue had to offer but it was obvious he only had one thing on his mind: Green Day. “Even during Damon’s stop at the Grand Plaza’s Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS team’s merch store, he was sharing everything he knew about the architects of his favorite music. He went in-depth to describe his favorite GreenDay songs and why each was on the list. It was incredible how intricately he thought through it all,” COTA representative for Make-A-Wish and Community Relations Coordinator Drake Allen said.
Alexander came ready to explore. Between visiting the different Formula One teams’ merchandise locations in the Fan Zone, taking pictures at the famous COTA letters, and looking out at the Austin city skyline from COTA’s iconic 25-story Observation Tower, it was clear Alexander was a curious and joyous spirit. When asked about his wish, Alexander shared that he learned to play the drums to honor Green Day.
As an extra treat, the Make-A-Wish families were escorted into the luxurious Circuit Suite to experience exquisite views of the track and a buffet dining experience that they could not stop raving about. However, all of the pre-show excitement faded to the background while they experienced the Green Day concert at Germania Insurance Super Stage. They sang and danced to every song on Green Day’s setlist, never taking their eyes off the Super Stage. They were authentically living in this moment as their wishes came true. Damon enthusiastically waved his large Green Day foam finger in the air and Alexander’s emotions flooded his face as he stared down at his hands, holding the two drumsticks he owned—personally signed by Green Day themselves.
“Watching them experience the Green Day concert was truly a heartwarming moment. It seemed as if they were the only two people in the packed audience,” Drake Allen said.
Circuit of The Americas’ team is united in the desire to be a positive catalyst for hope in the neighboring Austin-Area communities. COTA is deeply dedicated to supporting the Make-A-Wish organization in its mission to create life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses. Together and as a community, COTA and Make-A-Wish can renew hope, uplift spirits, and encourage the belief in miracles.
“We’re grateful for our friends at COTA who helped bring four unique wishes to life during the F1 USGP weekend. At Make-A-Wish we believe a wish gives kids with critical illnesses the strength to continue to fight and even overcome their illnesses. We rely on our community to make these wishes possible and we thank COTA for being part of that community – we are truly grateful,” Jill Skinner, Major Gifts Officer at Make-A-Wish of Central and South Texas, said.