Pink Ribbon Celebration

By Mike Steely

The 9th Annual Pink Ribbon Celebration is scheduled for the Grande Event Center on Thursday, October 26 from 6 to 9 p.m.

The message of the annual breast cancer awareness celebration is to “Honor Survivors” and all proceeds will go to the Compassion in Action Fund, founded in 2009 to help uninsured and underinsured women receive breast cancer imaging and to help those cancer patients with services and supplies.

The evening includes a silent auction, buffet, free parking, and music. Tickets are $50 per person or $1,000 per table. Breast cancer survivors are admitted at no charge.

Janine Mingie told The Focus that the response so far has been great with more than 300 people and 100 breast cancer survivors already signed up to attend as of two weeks ago. Mingie, the director of Tennova’s Breast Centers in North Knoxville and Turkey Creek, said that the room’s capacity is 500 people and it may be reached this year.

“I’m getting calls from businesses wanting to donate to the Silent Auction and there are lots of quality items. There are lots of generous people out there,” she said.

“We really appreciate The Knoxville Focus involvement,” she said of the newspaper’s continued support of the event.

Entertainment for the celebration features Mark Willis, a multi-platinum selling country star, and Emily Ann Roberts, an East Tennessean who was runner up on “The Voice.”

The speaker is Michael Holtz, a writer, author, cancer advocate and five-year cancer survivor. Emcees include Comedienne Lynn Morgan, WBIR’s Robin Wilholt and radio personality Michele Silva.

Sponsors include B97.5, WBIR, Provision, Compassion in Action, Tennova Health Care, Coleman’s Printing and Awards, Petree’s Flowers and Fountain City Jewelers. There will be a special presentation to survivors by Fountain City Jewelers and a free gift bag.

Last year’s attendance was heavy and this year’s event is already drawing lots of attention so hurry and reserve your seats while they are still available. Tickets and additional information are available by calling (865) 333-4939. The Grande Event Center, formerly the Knoxville Expo Center, is located at 5441 Clinton Avenue, Knoxville, at the intersection of Clinton Highway and Merchant Drive.

About one in eight women will suffer from invasive breast cancer during her life, or about 12.5% of the female population. One in one-thousand men will also suffer from breast cancer. Breast cancer causes the highest number of deaths than any other cancer among women.