New York Red Bulls to hold annual Autism Acceptance match for families with autism

It is a personal cause for Red Bulls president and general manager Marc de Grandpré, whose 16-year-old daughter Julia is on the spectrum.

Matt Trapani and Nick Meidanis

Apr 13, 2024, 12:53 AM

Updated 43 days ago

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The New York Red Bulls will take the field Saturday night for the 10th annual Autism Acceptance match.
The game is at 7:30 p.m. against the Chicago Fire. The Rd Bulls donate $3 for every ticket sold on Ticketmaster to the group “Autism Can.”
It is a personal cause for Red Bulls president and general manager Marc de Grandpré, whose 16-year-old daughter, Julia, is on the spectrum. She spent the week getting ready for the ceremonial coin toss.
"She’s been practicing this week. She’s ready to do the coin toss. She showed me last night. I came back from LA, she showed me how great she was doing, so she’s very excited,” de Grandpré says. “I can see a lot of pride, a lot of confidence in her. She’s so excited that this is her game and she tells everyone it’s her game and someday, hopefully, she’ll be able to look back and say, ‘Wow, I was part of what started to drive that change.”
The effort has helped raise money and awareness for autism – which affects 1 in 34 children in New Jersey, among the highest rates in the nation.
The Red Bulls have had a sensory room for every home match for the last seven years. Other sports venues and airports have followed suit.
The Red Bulls are also awarding a $5,000 grant to the Center for Autism in Newark. Saturday’s match will be designed for families with autism.


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