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Old 11-21-2005, 01:29 PM   #1
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Default Jay Thomas Contest Winner

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Portland woman wins radio contest, money for charity

By John Bailey
Staff Writer

Published: Wednesday, 11/09/05
Shanna Lawson of Portland is getting her 15 minutes of fame on Monday, Nov. 14, thanks to the Jay Thomas radio show.

Lawson, known as the “18-Wheeling” singing truck driver on the show, recently won the “On The Road With Jay Thomas Essay Contest.”

“This is all kind of a fluke really,” Lawson said. “I never enter things like this, but after getting off of work around midnight inspiration hit and I just started writing.”

She invited Jay and his crew to visit her favorite eatery Buffalo Wild Wings Grill & Bar located at 1699 Gallatin Pike in Madison.

Besides mentioning a good place to eat and watch a game, the essays were also supposed to mention a charity that the show could support with an auction.

Lawson decided she wanted 100 percent of the money raised to go to the American Diabetes Association.

“Raising awareness about this disease means a lot to me because my father has it, and I know how important it is to be tested for it,” Lawson said. “There are a lot of people who don’t even know they have it, and I’m hoping this event will help change that.”

As Lawson mentioned in her essay, “There seems to be a plethora of people in the South that could stand some foot- in-backside encouragement to help fight the onset of insulin-in-bloodstream deficiency...otherwise known as diabetes.”

Besides their appearance at Buffalo Wild Wings Grill & Bar, the show will also broadcast from the Sirius Satellite Radio studios in Nashville on Monday, Nov. 14 and Tuesday Nov. 15.

“This is the first time we’ve held a fund raiser,” the show’s producer Shawn Kelly said. “We think Shanna is a great winner. I thought her essay was funny and down to Earth.”

Kelly was also impressed with the charity Lawson picked.

“We certainly wanted to have some redeeming social value for the event and raising money for diabetes research is perfect,” said Kelly.

Items to be auctioned off include: a John Madden autographed NFL football, an NFL football autographed by the Minnesota Vikings Matt Birk, a NFL football autographed by the entire Miami Dolphins team, an autographed Pat Benetar long sleeved t-shirt and two genuine NASCAR race suits.

Lawson has been a fan of the show since it began last January.

“I like the fact that they are so natural on air and there’s no agenda,” Lawson said. “They talk about everything and are real characters. There is always something new, strange and funny to laugh about.”

She is also looking forward to introducing Jay and his crew to her favorite bar.

“I’m sure everyone will have a good time and we’ll raise plenty of money,” Lawson said.

Jay Thomas is the host of a national talk show on the Sirius Stars Channel 103 weekdays from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. He is also an Emmy award winning actor, with roles on Cheers, Murphy Brown, Mr. Holland’s Opus and Mork and Mindy.
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