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Think Pink: Breast Cancer Awareness Events

Here's how you can participate, pledge support and donate to the cause in your community

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and whether you love to shop, attend events, walk or run, there are tons of different ways to support the cause. Check out the list below of opportunities to "go pink"

Get your jump on for Breast Cancer—For the whole month of October at Rockin Jump Dublin, 5 percent of jump proceeds and donations will go to Tri-Valley Socks. Tri-Valley Socks is in Livermore and is dedicated to finding ways to cure cancer now. Their annual Bras for the Cause Breast Cancer Walk raises money for organizations such as Axis Community Health, Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, and Susan G. Komen for the Cure, San Francisco.  Visit the Rockin Jump website to schedule jump time.

Power of Pink—For every Power of Pink bracelet sold, Brighton in Stoneridge Mall will donate $10 to Axis Community Health, in support of breast cancer awareness, mammograms, and breast care. Visit the Brighton's store website for more details on purchasing this bracelet, which is on sale in October.

Stackable Rings for the CauseMark Gregory and Company will offer a 10 percent donation to Tri-Valley Socks for any purchase of Stackable Expression rings before Nov. 17. For more information, please visit their website.

Nail and Skin EmporiumThe Nail and Skin Emporium store will be collecting donations for Tri-Valley Socks and selling some of their bracelets for the month of October. They are located at 6995 Dublin Blvd., in Dublin.

Breast Cancer Symposium—On October 4, join ValleyCare Physicians and Staff members for the third annual Breast Cancer Symposium. The night will cover various topics including the importance of breast clinical exams, MRI of the breast, new paradigms in surgical management of breast cancer, radiation therapy, breast cancer genomics, personalized breast cancer therapy and survivorship, lymphedema treatment and more. The event is FREE and registration is required. Times and location may be found on their website

Breast Cancer Awareness EventSalon Terra Bella will be hosting a Breast Cancer Awareness Event on October 18. Five percent of all hair products sold will be donated to Tri-Valley Socks. There will be several raffle items featuring Steven Kent wines. Salon Terra Bella is located on the corner of Isabel Avenue and Vineyard Avenue in Ruby Hills, Pleasanton. This event is FREE. Check out their Facebook page for updates on the event. 

Rally for the Cure—Also on Oct. 18, Poppy Ridge Golf Course in Livermore will be hosting their Rally for the Cure Golf Scramble. The $75 charge includes 9-hole greens fee, $20 rally donation, lunch, clinic tee prizes, happy hour, raffle, and more. Proceeds for this event will go toward Breast Cancer research. For more details, check out the website flyer.

2012 TREK Breast Cancer Awareness Ride—On October 13, ride to raise awareness for breast cancer prevention, screening, treatment and to help fund a cure. Event will begin at The Bicycle Outfitter located at 963 Fremont Ave. Los Altos. More details and registration information may be found on the event website.

Sweat to Fight Cancer—Join ClubSport Fremont and the Breast Cancer Research Foundation in the fight against breast cancer. Participate in any one of our designated “Pink” classes, and get a “Sweat to Fight Cancer” t-shirt. Refreshments will be provided after all classes. All proceeds go towards the fight against breast cancer. Please visit the ClubSport Fremont's website for a list of scheduled classes and where to sign up.

Brides Against Breast Cancer—This is a unique opportunity to find the gown of your dreams at a remarkable price while helping make wishes and memory-making events come true. On Oct. 12-14, when you purchase your special dress at a "Brides Against Breast Cancer" charity wedding gown sale, you not only save hundreds even thousands of dollars you will help make a difference in the lives of those affected by breast cancer. Make a tax deductible donation at the event or buy tickets for $25. Event will be held in San Leandro at BayFair Mall located at 15555 East 14th Street San Leandro. More event details are on the EventBrite page.

Dirty Girl Mud Run— Join Dirty Girl and the National Breast Cancer Foundation on Oct. 27 for a 5k mud run for women of all ages and athletic abilities. The muddy race will take place at the Alameda County Fairgrounds. Don't worry, it's not a "race" in the traditional sense. There will be obstacles that challenge you too. The event will donate at least 2.5 percent of all registration fees to the National Breast Cancer Foundation. For registration information and event details, visit the Dirty Girl website or get updates on the Facebook page.

There are even more ways to spread breast cancer awareness this month by supporting national organizations that are fighting for a cure.

Research centers like Susan G. Komen for the Cure are selling pink ribbon merchandise and it’s a two-fer — retail therapy and donating to a cause that affects millions.

You can also support breast cancer research by affixing a special stamp to your mail. The U.S. Postal Service has been selling a stamp commemorating breast cancer awareness for the past 15 years. The agency has raised $75 million so far for research programs at the National Institutes of Health and the Department of Defense.

The American Cancer Society’s annual Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk is organized nationwide and so far more than 8 million people have walked for this cause and raised about $460 million.

And you can join people from four continents in a Race for the Cure event organized by Susan G. Komen For The Cure, or an Avon Walk For Breast Cancer event organized by the Avon Foundation for Women.

TELL US: Is there a special event you participate in to support breast cancer research? Share your stories and thoughts with us by adding them to the comments sections of this article. Also, be sure to add photos of you and your friends supporting the cause to the photo gallery above.

Renae Wilber October 02, 2012 at 01:54 AM
Here's the reality, and it isn't pretty. http://www.thescarproject.org/
Renae Wilber October 02, 2012 at 01:58 AM
Thank you Dalamar. It is simply not in the best interests of the pharmaceutical companies to find a cure. Fortunately, early detection does save lives, but many of us are kept on drugs for up to ten years after treatment. So perhaps my breast cancer is a win-win...I get to live via early detection, and the pharmaceutical companies get to make lots and lots of money. But a cure? I am not convinced. There is simply too much money to be made. Thank you so much for your validation and sentiments.
Renae Wilber October 02, 2012 at 01:59 AM
Amen Cherry!
Ken October 02, 2012 at 02:00 AM
Renae, I don't think we disagree It's not about the pink ribbon. It's a start. It get folks working in a positive direction; folks who might not otherwise have done so. So, I'll train, and come September next year, I'll walk. For you, and for every single person who has or will survived breast cancer. Please, be well. It does get better.
Renae Wilber October 02, 2012 at 02:01 AM
Lesli, working in the medical field doesn't mean you know what you are talking about. Why don't you go through cancer yourself, spend countless hours up every night researching...and then come back to me and tell me that you are IN IT TO END IT. You simply have no idea, but then I take it you haven't had breast cancer have you?
Renae Wilber October 02, 2012 at 02:05 AM
Thank you Ken, thank you for caring. Thank you for doing what you believe makes a difference, and if it does for countless people spiritually, then I applaud that. For me, it is just painful. I support Army of Women, I give my tissue, participate in clinical trials. I praise the American Cancer Society. There are many oganizations that I believe in, but the pink just makes me crazy...but thank you. Your heart and spirit are definitely in the right place.
Ron Geren October 02, 2012 at 02:11 AM
Absolutely devastating. It just leaves me in tears.
Ken October 02, 2012 at 02:23 AM
Renae,Thank you. I understand. More than you can imagine. Eventually, the anger fades, the fear subsides (though never really goes away), but we don't fear pink anymore.
Albert Rubio October 02, 2012 at 03:05 AM
> It is simply not in the best interests of the pharmaceutical companies to find a cure. What if I said the invention of the light bulb is not in the best interest of the oil lighting and candle companies and therefore will not happen? Fortunately, the history of invention and discovery in a free society does not follow this course. No one has a monopoly of knowledge, science and ideas. I once read that 9 out of 10 medical innovations and discoveries have occurred in America. A counter perspective to consider.
Tim October 02, 2012 at 03:18 AM
Albert, it's not just cancer drugs... there's no question that the goal of big pharma is to make as much money as possible without regard to the interests of the medical community. Here's another example... I can't watch tv for 10 minutes without being inundated with erectile drug commercials... all different and new drugs available. Drugs that keep people coming back for more... but, we see more and more drug resistant bacteria killing people (look up necrotising fasciitis) because (along with overuse of antibiotics) there has been next to nothing done for developing new antibiotics. Why spend the money to develop a drug that is taken one time for a few days when you can make a fortune creating drugs that are used daily and continuously?
Albert Rubio October 02, 2012 at 04:04 AM
Tim, From an economic point of view, this is simply not a valid concept. I think I already gave a strong counter example. The answer to the problem posed (I will call this "the problem of so called monopolies" or the "fear of monopoly") is competition. while company A does not want to invent what will put them out of business, Company B through Z have an equal desire to do exactly that. This is Competition. Having accepted this, The state has engaged in misguided and fallacious policies to enforce competition with harmful and contradictory antitrust laws. "Encouraging" competition is also the fallacy behind subsidizing companies like Solyndra. No one can encourage competition except by protecting the freedom of markets. Here is an article on the subject: Fear of Monopoly http://mises.org/daily/621
Tom October 02, 2012 at 04:06 AM
Renae, I also am a cancer survivor so I know what it it like to wonder what will happen. I wish you nothing but the VERY best of health and happyness.
Albert Rubio October 02, 2012 at 04:17 AM
>there's no question that the goal of big pharma is to make as much money as possible without regard to the interests of the medical community. Yes of course, Adam Smith said it best, "It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker, that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own self-interest." Notice the fact of self interest is correct, it's the conclusions drawn from it that is often wrong.
Renae Wilber October 02, 2012 at 05:11 AM
Thank you Tom, I also wish you the best of health and happiness. Cancer is a painful journey for all involved. Even as a survivor, there is the constant worry. I found out today that my bone scan is negative (thank God), now I have the mammogram and the MRI. I was only diagnosed one year ago, and have gone through chemo, radiation, partial mastectomy, and now Tamoxifen for five years. All I know is that each day is a gift. Cheers to life!
Renae Wilber October 02, 2012 at 05:42 AM
Albert, you make some good points, however, I don't think this in any way is fear of monopoly, but the power of those with the most money to control the outcomes. There are many brilliant minds, however, without funding for clinical trials, a cure cannot be established. Pharmaceutical companies have money, invest money, and see to it that results measure in their favor, which is to make sure their bottom line is always protected. In addition, The Komen Foundation has stock in pharmaceutical companies, and they are a political organization. I do however really appreciate all the conversation and enlightenment this has brought to the table. For more information, this might be useful for some. http://www.southernstudies.org/2012/02/flashback-how-the-komen-foundation-fights-health-reform-and-fails-cancer-patients.html
Renae Wilber October 02, 2012 at 06:07 AM
You are right Anita, and I think the whole "rah rah" breast cancer movement, which has become very faddish for many, is not only insulting to many of us who have firsthand experience with breast cancer, but diminishes the impact of other cancers. Unfortunately, it will take a corporation with a bottom line motive to bring awareness to other cancers in the way that Avon/Estee Lauder, etc. etc. has brought to and marketed breast cancer. All cancers are horrific and deserve equal attention.
Renae Wilber October 02, 2012 at 06:13 AM
Thank you Ron, that is what breast cancer really looks like. That is the unfortunate reality that many of us are left with. I plan on attending David Jay's exhibition in Los Angeles in January. I find that he has brought more honesty to breast cancer then any other entity has ever even attempted. Some prefer pink, I prefer honesty; and in the scars there is beauty.
Albert Rubio October 02, 2012 at 06:18 AM
Renae, You can dispense with the word "fear" if you prefer. The problem described is a classic problem ascribed to monopoly. you say " but the power of those with the most money to control the outcomes. " Monopoly means "Exclusive control or possession of something." I trust you see the connection, yes? I already refuted the idea that any firm has such control when competition is present. There is no monopoly on money for trials, nor can anyone seeking trials be prevented without some form of illegal coercion. The real obstacle is not monopoly or money or self interest (these have been refuted already), it is knowledge of any cure or possible cure. As soon as a cure is believed to exist, there will be a flood of resources in that direction to seek profits. When people denigrate or seek to abolish profit seeking, we will go back to a world of the worst kind of cancer, abject poverty and misery.
Renae Wilber October 02, 2012 at 06:33 AM
Albert, again, I appreciate your input, but as you seem unable to consider anything other than your own opinions, and profess those to be fact, it is frustrating to attempt to have a reasonable debate where multiple considerations are equally valued. As a last attempt to enlighten, if you will recall the pharmaceutical companies had a powerful drug for Aids many years ago...but few could afford it. After years of protests, legislation finally passed to make the drug affordable. But alas, the AIDS virus had become resistant to the drug, and although at one time it could have virtually wiped out AIDS had it been made affordable, the pharmaceutical companies would have no such thing. Unfortunately, no other brilliant minds came up with an equivalent drug during that time period. A monopoly by default is still a monopoly.
Tom October 02, 2012 at 03:15 PM
My path was melanoma, I was shocked at first. Then I made a couple of videos for my kids in case I did not survive. Now I look at it as my wake up call and consider it a turning point in my life. I do not live in fear but take great joy in life each day. I have never been the same but in a good way I think. Life is indeed a gift and I try not to waste it. For example I do not look at ANY of the general election decisions as life or death. I am informed and will vote but I am not about to let any of this get under my skin. I am a glass half full type of person. I always was but this path cemented it for me.
Renae Wilber October 02, 2012 at 05:00 PM
Tom, I also thought about the videos, for my grandchildren. I hear you so clearly...we are never the same after cancer, but do understand that life is a gift. The San Ramon Patch just posted my blog "The Day I Died" - I think you will appreciate this one. I hope you read it. Melanoma is extremely serious and I am thankful you are here to write about your journey.
David October 03, 2012 at 04:08 AM
Do you really think that pharmaceutical companies are composed of people who'd rather not cure a disease? Just think what they could charge for a real cure. If you don't believe in their humanity, you believe in the profit motive. 5 year survival rates in the land of for-profit medicine (the USA, well, maybe half the time at least) is 83% for breast cancer, the highest in the world (similarly and actually with even larger differentials for colon and prostate cancer). Cancer is a nasty disease in all its manifestations. It's also typically a disease of older people (cancer increases to the 4th power of age in mammals). As the death rates for heart disease and other causes fall (over 50% in the past 30 years for heart disease), the population ages, and cancer becomes more frequent. Why? Lots of theories, but moribund DNA repair mechanisms in general seem to be a common cause. It's almost never (except for smoking and a few other things) linked to "products." Now, more subtly think of what "proving" you had a cancer "cure" would entail. Now think of the FDA. The FDA won't let you sell a medicine unless you prove it's BOTH safe and effective. What would constitute "proof" that you "cured" cancer? Disease free for 5 years? 10 years? until the patient died from something else? It typically costs $30,000-$50,000 per patient for a clinical trial per year. How would you fund such a trial? Having cancer isn't easy. Neither is trying to treat it, never mind cure it.
David October 03, 2012 at 04:15 AM
As for antibiotics, we haven't seen more of them developed recently because right around 2003, the FDA (the government) changed the goal posts for a "successful" clinical trial. Rather than just showing you could safely kill a bug in people with infections, the FDA in its "wisdom" declared that the drug would have to be superior to existing antibiotics. Now you might think this makes sense...except, current (to 2003) antibiotics worked pretty well. So well, in fact, that in order to make a "superior" drug, you'd have to run a trial with thousands and thousands of patients (at $30k-$50k++ each, you're talking several hundred million dollars) and take a huge risk. Also contemplate the obvious fact that you want several "equivalent" drugs around at the same time just in case you get a resistant infection. The entire superiority concept never made sense. So, drug companies shut down their antibiotic programs. And now we're seeing more resistant bugs, completely drug resistant tuberculosis, completely drug resistant gonorrhea, and more. Thanks to your federal government.
David October 03, 2012 at 04:22 AM
Renae, what is the HIV drug you're thinking of? It's not AZT is it? AZT was approved in the shortest time ever by the FDA. AZT was widely used, and the virus naturally developed resistance to it, like viruses and bacteria do. It's impossible to eradicate HIV in infected people because it sits in immune cells' DNA. I'm sorry you got cancer, I'm sorry that treating cancer is difficult, frightening, exhausting, painful, and for many ultimately unsuccessful. However, your experience does not grant you knowledge of drug development, clinical trials, immunology or molecular biology.
Renae Wilber October 03, 2012 at 05:23 AM
David - Your opinions are just that. Opinions. And my experience has granted me the desire to research and study and understand, something that people that haven't had cancer only do for their careers, hardly for their survival. Much of my information can be found in Anti Cancer, by David Servan-Schreiber, MD, PhD, by a team of oncologists at Stanford Medical Center, and by vast research. I question your ability to debate a topic when you so readily dismiss substantiated evidence to the contrary. Now if you want to tell me that you are a research scientist for Stanford, UCSF, or any of the top cancer clinics in the Country, that you have a PHd from Harvard or Yale, and that you have been published in medical journals, I might actually offer your opinions some credibility; but in light of your angry and offensive demeanor and your inability to acknowledge such evidence, I'm afraid you have nothing to bring to the table of value. I am truly sorry if you have never been fully recognized by your peers and you find it therefore necessary to have angry debates on Patch, but I assure you that any scientists, researchers, or doctors whose opinions I value and read, are not trolling Patch in their spare time.
David October 03, 2012 at 01:03 PM
I have an undergrad degree in biochemistry and a phd in the same from UC Berkeley. I'm not sure hat you hunk is "anger" or "trolling" in my comments. Cancer is clearly caused by a series of gene mutations that occur all the time in people young and old. As people get older the mutations accumulate and simultaneously the mechanism the body uses to repair DNA break down. Eventually in some people this leads to cancer. Nutrition and "lifestyle" outside of smoking has very little to do with cancer. There is plenty of evidence for this. decades in fact.
Renae Wilber October 03, 2012 at 08:21 PM
David, I respect your credentials very much, and I agree with you that cancer can be caused, in fact in many cases, by gene mutations, however - there is also evidence that cancer is caused by many other environmental issues separate from gene mutations. As far as diet and exercise, you readily dismiss the value of one's immune system as a means of fighting off cancer cells, which is backed by years of research and studies. But I take it you work in the pharmaceutical industry so of course you would dismiss any evidence that directly conflicts with the mission of the industry. Lastly, there are numerous intellectuals with perspectives that are in contrast with yours. But, in all fairness, I had twelve doctors on the tumor board at Stanford, all extremely intelligent individuals with years of training and experience in cancer, and they could not agree on how to best proceed with my tumor. So, I respect your credentials, but I also believe that if you take a roomful of people with identical credentials, they are still not all going to agree on everything. In that, and after watching video footage of healthy white blood cells breaking down and destroying a malignant tumor, and after a year of treatment at Stanford which integrated Western medicine with nutrition and health professionals (all part of Stanford), I believe that our immune systems if strong have the ability to break down cancer cells. UC Berkeley is also not known for cancer research as Stanford is.
Renae Wilber October 03, 2012 at 08:38 PM
Contrary to what "biochemist David" believes - we do have control of our bodies. We may get cancer, and yes, it may be genetic or from old age - but a healthy immune system has been proven time and time again to fight cancer cells; diet and exercise of which are a crucial element of keeping cancer from recurring. It's really not rocket science. http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2012/04/25/151387672/evidence-mounts-that-diet-exercise-help-survivors-cut-cancer-risk
T. Sellick October 03, 2012 at 09:01 PM
Renae I agree with everything you are saying but it is important to allow those to continue working for a cure or for other ways to assist women in need. Sometimes you have to support those things that have ulterior motives to make a difference or you need to do your homework to find ways to help directly. My business partner and I started a charity to help women directly through financial assistance and preventitive measures. We have set up a fund at ValleyCare Hospital called "The Women in Need Fund" 100% of all the money goes to help pay for mammograms, prosthetic bras, compression sleeves and counseling services. We are trying to help Tri-Valley women directly. You will never see the name of my business listed because I am not looking for financial gain. If you want more information, you can find us at our Dentists Against Cancer website or go directly to ValleyCare Health Systems to find out more. Shelly Despotakis at Valley Care can help with handling direct donations to the fund. Please take a look and feel free to let me know what you think. Thanks
Renae Wilber October 03, 2012 at 09:18 PM
T.Sellick I can tell you what I think without yet having visited the site (which I definitely will). I think what you and your business partner are doing are hands down one of the greatest charitable ideas that I have heard of yet. It sounds like 100% of the fund raising goes to helping the very people that battle breast cancer, you are doing something where there is a desperate need, you are promoting the very breast cancer assistance needed without marketing your services (which I am not completely objectionable to, but so many do it as a means to market their business when their very business is not cancer friendly -- i.e. Kentucky Fried Chicken). I applaud you, a thousand times over. Thank you.

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