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Paint the Town Pink set for Monday
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Organizers are hoping for a pink McMinnville as the area observes Paint the Town Pink to raise awareness for breast cancer Oct. 29.
“It’s no secret Warren County has been affected by breast cancer,” said local breast cancer awareness advocate Ashley Wright. “There has always been local support for organizations like Susan G. Komen Upper Cumberland and the American Cancer Society, with residents willing to lend a hand or give a donation to breast cancer awareness fundraisers and events.”
Traditionally October is known as Breast Cancer Awareness Month and restaurants, department stores, medical facilities, offices, schools and even sports organizations participate by going pink for the month.
Though great advances have been made in combating this devastating disease, more than 200,000 women in the U.S. will be diagnosed with breast cancer this year, and over 39,000 are expected to lose their lives to the disease. Breast cancer is the second most common cancer among U.S. women and is one of the leading causes of cancer death in U.S. women. According to a 2004 study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Warren County had the second highest breast cancer mortality rate in Tennessee.
Like many community members, Wright began working with the breast cancer awareness cause because a good friend was diagnosed with the disease. In 2008, Wright began serving on the committee for Susan G. Komen Upper Cumberland’s Race for the Cure. Earlier this year, she was accepted onto the Upper Cumberland Board of Directors for the organization. She also volunteers with the American Cancer Society.
“So many people I know in Warren County have been touched by breast cancer,” said Wright. “Whether it’s a friend or a family member, we all know someone who has been deeply affected by the disease. We observe breast cancer awareness all during October, but I’ve been asked multiple times if a special day could be organized for our community to really go all out with the pink. That’s where Paint the Town Pink was born. After only a few phone calls to a few community leaders, we had started the ball rolling to make this an observance for the entire community.”
The day has been officially proclaimed Paint the Town Pink Day by proclamations in both the city and county.
Community members are encouraged to participate by fundraising for an official breast cancer research and awareness organization, by wearing pink, or by decorating their business, home, yard or vehicle with pink.
“We want people to wear pink Oct. 29, not just because it’s the popular thing to do or because some football player or celebrity is wearing it, but because they want to raise the awareness in our community of the risk factors of breast cancer – that everyone is at risk,” said Wright. “The two biggest risk factors are being female and getting older. We also want to remind all women to talk to their doctors about their risk factors and to get the appropriate screenings.”
McMinnville businesses, nonprofit organizations and health care providers are encouraged to use this opportunity to promote awareness about breast cancer and proper breast health. Wright has set up a Facebook page for the observance at for community members to upload pictures of their pink clothing and decorations throughout October.
Hopes are to make this an annual observance in Warren County and, with the help of Susan G. Komen Upper Cumberland, to spread the observance to all 14 counties of the Upper Cumberland in 2013.
Wright can be reached through the Paint Warren County Pink Facebook page or by calling 931-607-6599. For more information about breast cancer, visit or