FRANKFORT, Ky. (Feb. 25, 2011) – As spring approaches, First Lady Jane Beshear today shared details about the 137th Kentucky Oaks at Churchill Downs and encourages visitors to go “pink” for the third consecutive year. As part of the Horses and Hope program created by Mrs. Beshear and the Kentucky Cancer Program, race-goers are asked to wear pink articles of clothing to raise breast cancer awareness on Friday, May 6, 2011.
“I am delighted that Churchill Downs is coordinating with Horses and Hope for a third year to host Pink Out festivities at the Kentucky Oaks,” said Mrs. Beshear. “This day that celebrates the outstanding fillies of the racing world is the perfect opportunity for us to raise awareness among men and women about breast cancer. Last year, more than 116,000 people attended the Oaks, and we hope this year to have more colorfully attired folks than ever to help us go pink.”
Partnering with Horses and Hope for this special event is the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. For each person who attends the races on May 6, Churchill Downs officials will donate $1 to the Komen foundation. In addition, Churchill Downs will donate $1 to Horses and Hope for each of the Oaks’ signature “Pink Lily” drinks sold throughout the day.
Included in the day’s events will be a Survivor’s Parade around the track in front of more than 100,000 race fans. An online nomination and voting process at KentuckyOaks.com will allow guests to nominate and vote for inspirational breast cancer survivors. The 137 individuals with the most votes will receive two free reserved seats to the Kentucky Oaks and complimentary lunch at Churchill Downs.
The event will be nationally televised on NBC Sports Group’s VERSUS channel from 5-6 p.m.
There will also be a Chambord® Kentucky Oaks Fashion Contest, which will award a well-dressed winner with a VIP trip for two to Fall Fashion Week in New York City. The contest will be held on the “pink carpet” inside the Aristides Garden, and famed New York designer Betsey Johnson will serve as one of the judges.
Horses and Hope works with the state’s equine industry to provide breast cancer education, screening and treatment referral. The organization also hosts special events in collaboration with equestrian organizations to honor breast cancer survivors and to share information.
According to the Kentucky Cancer Registry, breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths among women in the Commonwealth. The American Cancer Society estimated that 3,200 Kentuckians would be diagnosed with the disease in 2010.
Since the program was founded in 2008, Horses and Hope has hosted Breast Cancer Race Days at major racetracks across the state, including Churchill Downs, Keeneland, Ellis Park and Turfway Park. Horses and Hope has educated more than 283,000 race track and horseshow fans and more than 6,000 equine employees. The program has screened more than 350 workers and detected breast cancer in two individuals, both of whom have received treatment.
For more information about Horses and Hope, visit http://www.horsesandhope.org. To find out more about the Kentucky Oaks, visit http://www.KentuckyOaks.com.
See you later...