Wizards of Waverly Place Star Jake T. Austin Attends Kids Party for a Cure Benefitting the DRI

Long Island, NY (February 8, 2012) — The atmosphere will be “magical” and the fun-o-meter will be cranked up high as “Wizards of Waverly Place” star Jake T. Austin joins in the revelry at the 9th annual Kids Party for a Cure benefiting the cure-focused work of the Diabetes Research Institute (DRI). The family-oriented event will be held at Dave & Buster’s at the Mall at The Source, 1504 Old Country Road in Westbury, on Sunday, March 25. The Party will feature activities for kids of all ages along with sweepstakes and a silent auction to keep adults on their toes as well. The festivities will kick off at 1 p.m. and run until 4 p.m.

“I’m excited to be a part of the Kids Party for A Cure that benefits the Diabetes Research Institute.  My grandfather has struggled with this disease, and it’s been important for me to learn more about diabetes and how to support the kids here who have it,” said Austin, who will participate in the event’s program, as well as a private meet and greet photo session for eligible sponsors.  “I know that the DRI is solely focused on finding a cure and that gives me a reason to believe that a cure for diabetes will happen in our lifetime.” 

Austin has generously agreed to donate his time to the Kids Party and will be presenting a check at the event in the amount of $2,500 to support the DRI’s important research.

“We are all thrilled to have Jake come to Kids Party for a Cure, and I know my daughter, Gracie, is particularly excited,” said René Checchia, who is co-chairing the event, along with Frankie Lam.  “His appearance will help bring more attention to type 1 diabetes and the need to find a cure for this disease as quickly as possible.”  

Whether appearing on TV/film or lending his voice to animated characters, 17-year-old Austin is a multitalented actor who has showcased his talent across the board in the entertainment industry. He’s best know for his role opposite teen sensation Selena Gomez as “Max Russo,” youngest wizard of three on Disney Channel’s Emmy Award-winning “Wizards” series that ended in January of 2012. The final episode drew an audience of 9.8 million viewers making it the most-watched series episode ever. More recently, Jake has been broadening his career by playing a major supporting role in director Garry Marshall’s hit movie “New Year’s Eve,” where he joined with stars like Sarah Jessica Parker and on television’s long-running series “Law & Order: SVU.” Jake is also recognized for his charitable work on behalf of organizations such as the Make a Wish Foundation, the Starlight Children’s Foundation and now the DRI.

Kids Party for a Cure will keep children and parents alike smiling from ear to ear, with fun activities such as video and arcade games, inflatables, bowling, pool tables and more, plus an array of food and beverages to please all palates. Guests will also be able to purchase sweepstakes tickets and bid on exciting items at the silent auction.  Goody bags will be provided to kids on their way out the door.

Sponsors include Super Shot Sponsors ACC Construction, The Donaldson Organization, the Frisoni Family, Michael Rodriguez, the Silverman Family and Robert Silvestri; and Skeeball Sponsors Arpielle Equipment Co., JLJ Enterprises, James Marrone and Joseph Sano. Sponsorships are still available.

Those interested in attending Kids Party for a Cure can purchase a family pass (2 adults/2 children) for $275 or other sponsorships online. The Arcade, March Madness, Cyclone and Supershot Sponsorships include a meet and greet and photo session with teen star Jake T. Austin. Children under 2 are free.  Children under 18 must be accompanied by an adult.  For more information, contact the Diabetes Research Institute Foundation at 516-822-1700.

About the Diabetes Research Institute and Foundation

The mission of the Diabetes Research Institute Foundation is to provide the Diabetes Research Institute with the funding necessary to cure diabetes now. The Diabetes Research Institute leads the world in cure-focused research. As the largest and most comprehensive research center dedicated to curing diabetes, the DRI is aggressively working to shrink the timeline toward the discovery of a biological cure for this disease.  Having already shown that diabetes can be reversed through islet transplantation, the DRI is building upon these promising outcomes by bridging cell-based therapies with emerging technologies. The Diabetes Research Institute was created for one reason – to cure diabetes – which is and will continue to be its singular focus until that goal is reached. For the millions of people affected by diabetes, the DRI is the best hope for a cure.  For more information, call 800-321-3437 or visit  


Media Contact:
Lauren Schreier 

Keep Up With Our Progress Toward A Cure & More