MINI USA has made a mission of finding clever ways to reach out to owners of its cars, and this year promises to be no exception with its announcement of the "MINI Takes The States 2010" experience. Slated for Denver on August 13-15, organizers of this weekend-long festival expect to draw some 10,000 MINI movers and shakers who'll start out from five different locations -- Atlanta, Chicago, New York City, Los Angeles and San Francisco -- earlier that week. The caravans are slated to pass though 19 states on the way to the Mile High City where attendees can mingle and swap MINI tales, take in a music festival and participate in on-site driving challenges as well as a public road rally. MINI owners are invited to register for the event at the dedicated website.

Fun with a higher calling

In addition to offering a unique bonding opportunity and the chance for an early close-up look at the new 2012 Countryman crossover model, MINI Takes The States 2010 will have two arguably even more significant missions. Blood drives for the American Red Cross will be held in all five kickoff cities as well as in Denver, and a portion of every registration fee will be donated to the Leukemia Society in memory of Ryan Marie Boykin, a young MINI enthusiast who succumbed to Lymphoblastic Leukemia in 2007, but whose spirit lives on through the project known as "Ryan's MINI Adventure."

"MINI owners have much more than just a car," said Jim McDowell, vice president, MINI USA. "When they join the MINI family, owners become part of a passionate community that offers camaraderie and fun driving experiences that have become a core part of the MINI brand." This marks the third semi-annual MTTS event, which began in 2006 and now alternates with the UK-based MINI United event. The first MTTS was based around a two-week, cross-country rally that went from Laguna Seca Raceway in Monterey, California, to Lime Rock, Connecticut. In the summer of 2008, the MTTS action was split four ways to encompass separate regional gatherings in Boston, Miami, Chicago and Los Angeles.

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