UPDATE: This year’s Make-A-Wish Radiothon raised $285,000 towards granting life-changing wishes for children battling critical illnesses.

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — The 29th annual Make-A-Wish Radiothon, hosted by News 4 and 97 Rock, starts at 6 a.m. Thursday morning and runs through 10 a.m. on Friday.

News 4 will bring you live coverage and guest interviews from the Radiothon over the course of the event, beginning an hour before the event kicks off.

What is Make-A-Wish

Make-A-Wish grants life-changing wishes to children battling critical illnesses nationwide. The goal is to grant the wish of every eligible child within our local community.

Wishes aren’t magical — they require a significant amount of creativity, time and generosity. However, each wish feels magical to a child fighting an illness, and with the help of donations from the community, Make-A-Wish can continue to provide these special experiences.

Donations, incentives & auctions

To donate to Make-A-Wish, click or tap here. You can also donate by phone at 716-587-8500.

There are plenty of donation incentives throughout the 28-hour radiothon as well, including an online and live auction, with all proceeds going toward making Western New York area wishes come to fruition.

Silent auction

To see the items and experiences in the silent online auction and how to bid on them, click or tap here. Bidding closes at 8:30 p.m. Oct. 1. There are more than 100 items up for auction, including Bills tickets and autographed memorabilia, adventure experiences, dinners, trips, and much more.

Live auction — limited time only

There are more than a dozen high-value prizes items and experiences in the live auction, but you can only bid by calling 716-587-8577 between certain hours. To see what’s available in the live auction and when they can be bid on, click or tap here or check out the file below. You can win a Sabres suite, an ice cream truck party, live musical performances, and even a Buffalo Sabres Team Signed Limited Edition Rick Jeanneret Bubble Hockey Game.

Donation packages

Additionally, there are multiple donation packages that will be available while supplies last:

  • Russell’s Incentive Package: With a donation of $325 or more, you can receive a certificate that includes an overnight state in a Whirlpool Suite at Salvatore’s Grand Hotel, as well as dinner and breakfast for two at Russell’s Steaks, Chops, and More Restaurant. (Not valid on holidays)
  • Delta Sonic Incentive Package: A donation of $200 or more includes three months of car washes and unlimited interior cleanings from Delta Sonic.
  • Batavia Downs Incentive Package: A $200 or more donation includes a one-night stay for two at the Hotel at Batavia Downs, a $50 dinner credit in Fortune’s Restaurant and $25 in free play for you and one guest. (Expires March 31, 2024)
  • 26Shirts Incentive: Make a cash donation of $75 or more and receive an official 26Shirts “Wishes Rock” t-shirt.

The radiothon will be broadcasting live from Sto Lat’s Event Center at the Eastern Hills Mall. Supporters are welcome to stop by and donate in person.

To learn more about Make-A-Wish, click here.

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Adam Gorski is a Buffalo native who joined the News 4 team in 2022. You can find more of his work here.