The American Cancer Society’s Pink Out the Park, presented by TMC Health, returns to Tucson at the UA Tech Park from 8 a.m. to noon Sunday, Oct. 16.
The celebration for breast cancer survivors offers a new, completely shaded walking route; a VIP pancake breakfast for survivors and their families sponsored by Walmart; and special guests, Wilbur and the UA Cheer team, the Tucson Roadrunners and other local sponsors.
Registration for the mile-long route will begin at 7 a.m.
The University of Arizona Cancer Center, a department of Banner-University Medicine, will also be present at the event to provide breast cancer awareness and education about screening as the event’s education sponsor. Nova Foster, a breast surgeon and medical director of the Breast Program at the UA, will also speak at the event to go over early detection kits, the UA Cancer Center and the services that it offers.
“We have about 60 members of our team across the ambulatory service line including imaging, oncology services (and) leadership walking in the event” said Lexie Smith-Raymond, director of regional radiation oncology at Banner Health.
Smith-Raymond said that early detection is key and that it is important to get the word out to the community regardless of their family history.
“Once (women) hit that 40-year mark, they really need to get in for their annual mammograms to make sure that they’re (practicing) prevention to make sure that if anything does pop up for them, we catch it early,” Smith-Raymond said.
Screening can begin as early as 25 for those who have a family history of breast cancer.
“People don’t realize how important [detection methods] are for finding cancer early, so that we can treat them as early as possible,” Smith-Raymond said.
Formerly known as Making Strides Against Breast Cancer, the rebranded event strives to bring the breast cancer survivor community back together. Roxanne Majeski-Hiller, development manager for the American Cancer Society, said the event usually brings together about 200 to 300 survivors. “When you’re facing cancer or when you’re going through cancer treatment, it can be a very lonely process,” Majeski-Hiller said. “I feel this is a way to show you aren’t alone, you have a community and you have a community backing you.
Valerie Marine, associate director of operations at Banner Health, added, “We’re looking forward to having fun, getting good exercise and showing support for our cancer patients, their families and (educating) the general public.”
Pink Out the Park challenges participants to fundraise at least $100 to help meet their goal of $115,000 for further cancer research, patient care programs and more during Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The American Cancer Society is open to donations year-round.
“It’s all about the reason why we’re doing this in the first place and bringing the community back together for our breast cancer survivors,” Majeski-Hiller said.
Pink Out the Park
WHEN: 8 a.m. to noon Sunday, October 16
WHERE: UA Tech Park, 9070 S. Rita Road, Tucson
COST: See website for details