FORT LAUDERDALE, FL--(Marketwired - April 01, 2016) - The Dan Marino Foundation and Panera Bread will commemorate National Autism Awareness Month and score a "Touchdown For Autism!" The Touchdown for Autism awareness and fundraising campaign will be hosted at thirty (30) Panera Bread Cafés across Broward and Palm Beach Counties (excludes Hallandale Beach). 

Panera Bread will feature an exclusive "Football" cookie menu item that will only be available in cafés from April 1 through April 15, 2016. These one-of-a kind cookies will be sold individually or by the "Marino Dozen," 13 cookies. $1 from the sale of each cookie will benefit the Foundation. In addition, with the generous help of their customers, Panera Bread will be collecting funds in all thirty (30) cafés through their Operation Doughnation boxes located next to the registers at each café. Operation Doughnation boxes will give Panera Bread customers an opportunity to further support The Dan Marino Foundation every time they visit a café April 1, through August 31, 2016.

"Since 2011 the Panera cookie campaign has continued to make a difference in the daily life of children and young adults with autism. I appreciate everything Sam and his team are doing and look forward to another great year," said Dan Marino, Chairman of the Dan Marino Foundation.

Over the last five years Panera Bread has raised more than $235,000 for The Dan Marino Foundation and the Foundation's programs for children and young adults with autism and other developmental disabilities.

"Our partnership with The Dan Marino Foundation continues to flourish every year, our company is proud to be part of the amazing things the Foundation is doing for the autism community," said Sam Covelli of Covelli Enterprises, Owner Operator of Panera Bread in Broward/Palm Beach County, FL.

ABOUT COVELLI ENTERPRISES/PANERA BREAD: Covelli Enterprises is the largest franchisee of Panera Bread, LLC, with more than 275 bakery-cafés in Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Kentucky, Florida and Toronto, Canada. In 2015, Covelli Enterprises donated more than $26 million to non-profit organizations.

ABOUT THE DAN MARINO FOUNDATION: The Dan Marino Foundation, Inc., a 501(c) 3 organization was established by Dan and Claire Marino, motivated by their experiences in raising their son, Michael, who is diagnosed with autism. For over 24 years, the Foundation has been a leader in innovation and change, "empowering individuals with autism and other developmental disabilities." For more information, please visit or or

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Rixys Alfonso