Little Silver and its neighbors are about to go glitzy for a good cause.
This month residents will mark national Childhood Cancer Awareness Month by painting the borough's businesses gold, all in the name of saving babies, kids and their families from the trials of the disease that organizers say affects one out of every 320 children.
"This is hitting close to home," said Lori Saybolt, who heads the Little Silver Business and Professional Association. "Enough people have young kids affected by pediatric cancer right here in town."
She points to the Daneman and McLoone families whose respedtive daughter and son, Lilly and Jack, were both treated for cancer. Both, now 13 and 15, have been in remission for more than two years.
"It's not something that's rare," Saybolt said.
At her shop, the and at , residents and business owners can pick up event posters and purchase supporter cards, similar to the Multiple Sclerosis sneaker, for $1. According to the Make Some Noise: Cure Kids Cancer Foundation, only three percent of federal dollars going to cancer research go to pediatric cancers, hence the need for private funding.
Throughout the month Little Silver will become progressively more gilded as LSBPA encourages businesses to decorate their windows gold and offer special gold sales to benefit the cause.
Organizer Gerri Daneman, who is vice president of the foundation, told Patch that she knows that not all businesses will be able to give money directly. "We're not telling anyone what to do," she said, adding that she is open to any idea a business owner has about a way to contribute, either by offering supporter cards for purchase or just raising awareness by painting a storefront window gold.
In Little Silver, has the gold ribbon support cards on sale and when customers purchase them, owners Tom and Eileen Caruso will display cards with customers' names. , is also selling the cards along with a raffle for a spa service for all who donate.
This is the first year this area has participated in Paint the Town Gold, and Daneman said, it is an evolving event."I'm really excited," she told Patch on Wednesday.
She won't be asking anyone to paint their house gold, but instead will look to see the awareness ideas grow naturally. So far the event has spread to schools and businesses in Atlantic Highlands, Long Branch, Sea Bright and Ocean Township, where Daneman said to keep your eye out for the gold flags.
Monmouth Medical Center, which treats children with cancer, and the Monmouth Medical Foundation will underwrite the gold banners that will go up on Prospect Avenue on Friday.
The month-long event will culminate on Sept. 28 with a charity dinner auction at Gibbs Hall on the , located on the former Fort Monmouth property. Proceeds from the third annual "Rockin' For Gold" will go toward research for pediatric cancer. will donate a kid's sports car (you know, the kind only someone under three feet tall can "drive") to the auction. is donating the event space. Tickets for the event -- which include golf in the morning, auction and dinner at night, with open bar -- are $100. Brian Kirk and the Jerks will play. For more information, contact Beth McLoone.
This summer, area beach club swim teams got in on the action by hosting their second year of Swimmers Go Gold race nights, which benefited the Make Some Noise.
The Make Some Noise:Cure Kids Cancer Foundation was founded by Malcolm Sutherland-Foggia, a now 13-year-old, who is in remission from bone cancer. Click on the video with this story to hear Malcolm's story and why he wants to Make Some Noise.
The board of Make Some Noise wants to make people aware of many reasons why pediatric cancer deserves some special attention. Here are a few:
- There is no early detection or screening process for pediatric cancer.
- Some pediatric cancers have protocols that are 20-30 years old.
- Surviving isn't the whole battle, 75 percent of kids that make it live long term side effects and handicaps caused by treatment.
To get involved with Paint the Town Gold, e-mail Gerri Daneman.