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The Cove at Daytona Redux!

January 20, 2012 by Ric O'Barry, Earth Island Institute

By Ric O’Barry
Campaign Director
Save Japan Dolphins
Dolphin Project
Earth Island Institute

RACE CAR DRIVER AND ECO-ACTIVIST LEILANI MUNTER IS GETTING IN GEAR TO TAKE THE COVE MOVIE TO THE HIGH BANKS OF DAYTONA!  She is almost there with enough donations to enter her car -- can you help put her over the top?

To donate visit: http://www.opsociety.org/donate/DaytonaCarDonation.htm and be sure to write “for Daytona” in the notes.

Activist Raising Funds For A Cove-Themed Race Car to Help Raise More Mainstream Awareness of Dolphin Captivity and Slaughter

My dear friend, Leilani Munter, race car driver and passionate environmentalist, is almost there on her goal of driving a Cove themed race car at the Daytona International Speedway, arguably one of the most famous race car tracks in the world.  The ARCA race at Daytona is February 18 and will air live on SPEED television, which is available in 79 million homes.  This will be the first ever ocean awareness themed racecar to race the high banks of Daytona.  Munter is seeking corporate and philanthropic donations for the remaining funds required.

To donate visit: http://www.opsociety.org/donate/DaytonaCarDonation.htm and be sure to write “for Daytona” in the notes.

The Academy-Award winning documentary The Cove exposes the annual slaughter of thousands of dolphins in a small cove in Taiji, Japan.  It also exposed the undeniable connection between dolphinariums and dolphin captivity, and the largest slaughter of dolphins in the world.

The Cove forever changed me.  I know race fans will respond to it, they just need to know about it,” said Munter.  “The race falls on my birthday, and my greatest wish is to end the slaughter and ongoing abuse of these beautiful ocean creatures.”

This campaign is designed to educate and engage 75 million race fans in the United States.  Director of The Cove Louie Psihoyos has committed to giving away DVDs of The Cove at the race, and in addition, will be in attendance for the race (alongside me) autographing DVDs of the film.  People donating $50 or more will be entered into a raffle to win two pit passes for the Daytona race and two other lucky fans will win two garage passes each.  Munter will be wearing a helmet painted for The Cove during the race, which will then be auctioned off with all the proceeds going to Ric O’Barry’s Dolphin Project to continue the fight on the ground in Taiji.

Munter is a biology graduate turned race car driver and environmental activist who adopts an acre of rainforest for every race she runs and promotes only environmentally conscious companies on her race car.  Since seeing the film, she has traveled three times to Taiji, Japan, to document the slaughter first hand and has organized several screenings of the film.  Most recently, she spearheaded a campaign to turn the lights of the Empire State Building red to raise awareness.

At Munter’s last race at Daytona, she was driving the first ever 100% eco sponsored race car, with six environmental companies coming together to get her car on the track.  The race was watched by 2.4 million people live on SPEED television, and 100,000 people were watching the race trackside.  The media exposure she received included the front page of the sports section of the New York Times.

Incidentally, if you can't be there in person with us in Daytona, the race will be broadcast again on the SPEED channel at 430pm Eastern time on Feb 18th.

The Cove received 47 awards including the Audience Award at Sundance Film Festival and the Oscar for best documentary film.  New York Magazine described it as “Passionate, exciting and frightening”, and Cinematical called it “A stunning, shocking story. The film itself is an act of heroism.”  More than 2.3 million people from 151 different countries signed a petition asking for the slaughter to end.  The grassroots movement to spread awareness has spread to social media, with over 500,000 fans of the movie on Facebook.

For more information on the cause visit thecovemovie.com, opsociety.org and dolphinproject.org,  and for more information on Leilani, visit carbonfreegirl.com.


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The Cove at Daytona Redux!