Race Day Soiree to benefit local cancer efforts

The following post was written by American Cancer Society Race Day Soiree co-chairwoman Michele Sebastianelli; committee members Kim Neely and Jill Bailey; and American Cancer Society Distinguished Giving Director Nathan Leopard.

And they’re off!  The first leg of the Triple Crown will run in less than a month, and while most of us won’t attend the Kentucky Derby on May 5th, horse racing enthusiasts can capture some of the excitement and support a great cause by attending a late afternoon event that features great food, wonderful music, and a lively viewing of the big race.

The American Cancer Society’s Race Day Soiree, chaired by Susan Lauth, Michele Sebastianelli, and Nancy Silvis, is in its second year with proceeds benefiting the Society’s patient service programs in Centre County, as well as national research initiatives.  This outdoor event will be held Saturday, May 5th, from 4:30 – 7:30 pm on the back lawn of Blake and Linda Gall’s home in Boalsburg where guests will enjoy breathtaking views from Mt. Nittany.  Proceeds from this fun summer event will fund local efforts to support patients’ fight against cancer, including programs and services like Look Good….Feel Better, Hope Lodge, Camp Can Do, Reach to Recovery, and transportation assistance.  Last year, these programs helped nearly 200 Centre County residents.

Attendees will also be given a unique opportunity to exclusively support the Society’s Road to Recovery program through a special auction.  Road to Recovery is a program that helps ensure Centre County patients get to treatment through the efforts of dedicated Society volunteers.  The committee’s goal is to raise enough support through this special auction to provide a safe and fuel-efficient vehicle for the program’s use.

Cancer is a serious health issue; more than 1.2 million Americans will hear the words, “you have cancer” this year.  In 2010 there were 581 new cancer cases in Centre County.  Since 1 in 2 men and 1 in 3 women will be diagnosed with cancer at some point in their lifetimes, we all know someone whose life is impacted by this illness.   But, there is reason for optimism and hope.  Today there are 11 million cancer survivors—important progress is being made every day toward finding new treatments and methods of early detection.

With nearly $45,000 raised from the inaugural event, the 2012 edition is setting its sights even higher with a goal of more than $55,000.  Thanks to the generous support of local sponsors, the event is well on its way to exceeding that goal.  Mount Nittany Health System is once again serving as the event’s Presenting Sponsor, with major support coming from Mercedes-Benz of State College, the Shaner Foundation, and Susquehanna Bank and many others.

Race Day Soiree tickets are still available at $150 per person and can be purchased by calling the Centre Unit of the American Cancer Society at 814-234-1023 or by downloading the RSVP form.  Please RSVP by tomorrow, Thursday, April 26th.  The event will be catered by Dan Rallis with live music provided by the Deacons of Dixieland and Benjamin Kim.

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