Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the world’s largest breast cancer organization, officially renewed their partnership Feb. 17 with Churchill Downs and the Kentucky Oaks (gr. I).
The partnership was started last year to raise funds and to aid in breast cancer awareness and research through events on Kentucky Oaks day. The Kentucky Oaks and corresponding activities will again by showcased live by the Bravo Network in partnership with its parent company, NBC Universal.
Kentucky Oaks 136 will once again feature a “Ladies First” theme and a day of events to raise money and awareness for Susan G. Komen for the Cure, which leads the global movement for breast cancer research, education, advocacy, and community support.
“We learned last year just how much of an impact Oaks day has for raising awareness and funds for breast cancer programs all around the world,” Nancy Brinker, founder and chief executive officer of Susan G. Komen for the Cure, said in a press release. “As the first ‘First Lady of the Oaks’, I was very moved by the generosity and passion for this cause, and so we are very happy to see this new tradition continuing.”
Churchill Downs has pledged to donate $1 to Susan G. Komen for the Cure for every person in attendance on Kentucky Oaks day. Last year’s Oaks drew a crowd of 104,867. The attendance record for the Oaks is 111,243.
Additionally, Churchill Downs will donate $1 per sale of Oaks Lilies, the official drink of the Kentucky Oaks, to Horses and Hope, the breast cancer outreach and awareness initiative in Kentucky’s horse racing industry. Horses and Hope was founded in 2008 by Kentucky First Lady Jane Beshear and the Kentucky Cancer Program to identify new opportunities to provide breast cancer awareness, education, and early detection through screening and treatment referral, as well as to raise funds to sustain programs into the future.
Oaks day events will include a “Pink Out”, which encourages all Oaks attendees to incorporate pink into their attire for the day to show their support. There will also be a moving Survivors Parade, where breast cancer survivors will accompany the Oaks fillies on the walk from the barn area to the paddock, a First Lady of Fashion Contest, and a special Kentucky Oaks winner’s circle formed by breast cancer survivors.
“We’re delighted to continue this important partnership to fight breast cancer with Susan G. Komen for the Cure and share in this special celebration through a broad audience on NBC Universal’s Bravo Network,”said Robert Evans, president and chief executive officer of Churchill Downs Inc., the racetrack’s parent company, in a press release.