Aaron's Associates Raise $100,000 for Victory Junction Gang: Aaron's Dream Machine driver Michael Waltrip makes $1 million donation

Jul 11, 2005

ATLANTA, July 11, 2005 (PRIMEZONE) -- Aaron Rents, Inc., the nation's leader in the rental, sales and lease ownership, specialty retailing and rental of residential and office furniture, consumer electronics, home appliances and accessories, has announced its commitment to support the mission of Victory Junction Gang, a retreat for sick children founded by NASCAR's Petty family in honor of the late Adam Petty.

Mike Hickey, Aaron's Vice President of Management Development said, "I know I speak for every associate at Aaron's when I say that we are honored to be connected with the Victory Junction Gang and with Michael Waltrip's amazing fund-raising efforts on behalf of the camp."

Aaron's associates and stores contributed more than $100,000 in donations for the camp as part of an overall $1 million donation to the facility made by Aaron's Dream Machine driver Michael Waltrip. Waltrip's donation was comprised of funds from various sources, including monies raised when he completed the Las Vegas Marathon as part of his ambitious Operation Marathon program earlier this year.

Aaron's executives recently attended the first anniversary celebration at Victory Junction during which a statue of Michael Waltrip running the marathon was unveiled in front of the newly named Michael Waltrip Operation Marathon Sports Center. In attendance were Aaron's Sales & Lease Ownership President Ken Butler, and members of Aaron's senior management team including Greg Bellof, Rich Lamprey, Mitch Paull and Mark Rudnick.

"The first time I visited the Victory Junction Gang Camp I was so impressed with the quality of the facility, the activities for the campers and the complete dedication of the staff, that I knew this was a cause Aaron's employees would rally around," said Aaron's President Ken Butler. "What the Petty family has been able to achieve on 75 acres of land in North Carolina's Piedmont Triad is nothing short of miraculous and Aaron's is both humbled and honored by our association with the camp."

The Victory Junction Gang Camp opened its doors just one year ago in North Carolina with the goal of enriching the lives of children with chronic and life-threatening illnesses by creating camping experiences that are exciting, fun, physically safe and medically sound. Since last June, the camp has hosted more than one thousand kids with serious diseases, offering them the type of traditional camping programs they previously might not have been able to experience.

All of the children aged 7 - 15 who attend Victory Junction would not otherwise be able to attend camp because of their special needs. Through the generosity of the Petty family, and donors like Michael Waltrip and Aaron's Sales & Lease Ownership, the camp experience is provided free of charge to both campers and their families.

Victory Junction has a racing theme with the sight, sounds, look and feel of a racetrack. Campers and families attending the camp can participate in activities such as boating, fishing, swimming, arts and crafts, horseback riding and more. Every Tuesday night is NASCAR night at the camp, and NASCAR's most well known drivers and their pit crews make frequent appearances to provide driving demonstrations and moral support to the Victory Junction campers.

More about the Victory Junction Gang Camp:

The Victory Junction Gang Camp is open year-round. The 2005 summer program consists of ten week-long sessions for 125 children each session. The remainder of the year, the camp addresses the needs of the whole family by providing family and sibling retreat weekends, as well as special camper reunion events. Some of the health issues of the campers who attend Victory Junction Gang Camp include: arthritis, asthma, burn survivors, cancer, epilepsy, hemophilia, immunology deficiencies/HIV, sickle cell disease, spina bifida, gastrointestinal disease, heart disease, kidney disease, liver disease, neurological disease, and skin disease. Campers come to Victory Junction for a week specifically tailored to the needs of their disease, which allows them to make friends with other kids who have shared some of the same experiences.

More about Aaron's:

Aaron's stores offer customers access to high quality furniture, appliances, electronics and computers for sale or as a lease-ownership arrangement. Customers have the option of buying their merchandise for an attractive cash price, or opting to lease their merchandise for even greater flexibility. With a lease option, customers make modest monthly payments and have the immediate use of the items they need without waiting for credit checks or other delays. Plus, Aaron's will take care of delivery, set-up, repairs and more for the duration of a customer's lease.

Aaron Rents, Inc. (NYSE:RNT) is a leader in the sale and lease ownership of residential furniture, consumer electronics and home appliances, now with more than 1,110 Company-operated and franchised stores in 45 states, Canada and Puerto Rico. The Company also manufactures an exclusive line of furniture, bedding and accessories at 10 facilities in four states.

The Aaron Rents, Inc. logo is available at: http://www.primezone.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=1554

CONTACT: Victory Junction Gang Camp
Leona Trombly, Media Relations
(336) 498-9055
Website: www.victoryjunction.org

Aaron's Sales & Lease Ownership
Mark A. Rudnick, Vice President, Marketing
(678) 402-3470
Website: www.shopaarons.com