By Loné Beasley


ADA — Television’s American Idol has a history of culling thousands of ambitious wannabe stars down to one lucky, and extremely talented, winner.

But at least once each year the popular TV show does what it can to help thousands of unfortunates whose highest ambition is to get to tomorrow. And this year a local firm has volunteered its resources to help.

Wednesday night Interactive Response Technologies, Inc. (IRT) in Ada will be coordinating telephone calls from television viewers around the country who call in to give donations in American Idol’s Third Annual “Idol Gives Back” event. Telethons past have raised over $140 million to benefit charities around the world. This year’s donations will go to Haiti earthquake relief efforts.

Tera Bradstreet, Ada IRT site manager, said she is excited about participating in the event. “Call in time locally is 7 p.m. to midnight Wednesday,” she said. A flyer to promote participation said employees will be paid their normal hourly wage, but participation is voluntary. Those helping will be eligible for hourly drawings for gift cards and other prizes.

Entertainers scheduled to perform to keep the phones ringing include Alicia Keys, Carrie Underwood, The Black Eyed Peas, Annie Lennox and Jeff Beck.

The show airs 7 p.m. Tuesday on Fox Channel 2 on Cable One in Ada with fundraising programming scheduled for two hours Wednesday night. IRT associates will be accepting donation calls till midnight Wednesday.

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