by Carreen Schroeder
On Oct. 10, the Hard Rock Café, Niagara Falls USA, hosted its 15th annual Pinktober event. Along with the American Cancer Society, the Canadian Cancer Society, Erie County Medical Center, the ECMC Lifeline Foundation, the Buffalo Bills and Nicholas Picholas of WKSE "Kiss" 98.5-FM, the Hard Rock gathered survivors, Bills fans and musicians to raise awareness and funds in a united front against breast cancer.
The evening began with guests and survivors gathering along the Rainbow Bridge, connecting the U.S. and Canada. In a powerful symbol of the two countries' unity in the fight to end breast cancer, participants created a living ribbon across the bridge while Niagara Falls was lit up with pink lights.
Picholas emceed a free outdoor concert along O'Laughlin Drive with performances by The Spazmatics and The Diva Show. Vendors lined the streets, with merchandise proceeds going to the American and Canadian cancer societies, the ECMC Lifeline Foundation and the Bills 'BILLIEVE' breast cancer awareness campaign.
Hard Rock is continuing its efforts to raise funds and awareness throughout the month of October with a long line of Pinktober merchandise for sale, including men's and women's T-shirts and pins. Hard Rock hotels are joining the campaign and encouraging guests to "Get into Bed for the Cause" with special room rentals draped with Hard Rock's pink sheets, pink robes, pins and more. A portion of the room rate also will benefit several breast cancer charities.
It's All About The Fight
The American Cancer Society operates with more than 3 million volunteers working to help eradicate cancer. The ACS leads the nation as the largest non-governmental investor in cancer research and has contributed about $3.4 billion toward the fight.
The Canadian Cancer Society, a national community-led organization of approximately 140,000 volunteers, has been fighting to end cancer since 1938 with over 1 million people having received assistance since 1996.
The ECMC Lifeline Foundation operates as a tax-exempt 501(c)(3). Among its other responsibilities, the foundation operates the only mobile mammography coach in Western New York. With two state-of-the-art mammography systems and two certified mammography technologists, the mammography coach travels to areas around Western New York providing breast health care to patients who may otherwise not have an opportunity for a screening. Dr. Linfield, an American board-certified surgeon specializing in the treatment of breast disease, acts as the clinical director.
If one does not have a family doctor or medical insurance, Western New York Breast Health can assist. Should one require a ride, it can arrange transportation to the mammography mobile coach when it is in one's neighborhood.
For more information on the Hard Rock Café's Pinktober program, call 716-282-0007. For more information on the American Cancer Society, call 1-800-227-2345 or visit www.cancer.org. To learn more about the Canadian Cancer Society, call 1-888-939-3333 or visit www.cancer.ca. To learn more about the ECMC Lifeline Foundation, call 716-898-5800 or visit www.ecmc.edu/about/lifeline/.
Buffalo Bills quarterback E.J. Manual with breast cancer survivor Lisa Dudley of Grand Island. (submitted photo)