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Polo Play, Family and Friends Raise Funds for M. D. Anderson

Polo Play, Family and Friends Raise Funds for M. D. Anderson
M. D. Anderson News Release 05/08/00

The 14th annual Polo on the Prairie tradition of family and friends, high-spirited polo play, good food and entertainment, was highlighted by the dedication of a group of sixth graders accomplishing yeoman's work to benefit The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center.

On the eve of the April 15 Big Event, about 200 sixth graders from Eastland and Woodson Middle Schools visited the polo field at the Musselman Brothers Lazy 3 Ranch to see polo first hand - "opening day" some of the kids proclaimed it. The lunchtime excursion rounded out their week-long educational curriculum about the origins and etiquette of polo and some simple cancer prevention messages.

Arriving by school bus, dustily inching up the prairie ranch road, they brought with them their own special hope - the $1,700 they had collected from around their schools and neighborhoods to help fund cancer research. Eastland contributed $1,000, and Woodson raised $754.10.

"This is so amazing," exclaimed Mary Anne McCloud, who co-chaired the event with her daughter and son-in-law Melinda and Henry Musselman of Midland. "I am so surprised and touched."

It was a banner day, complete with a sea of sack lunches and sodas for all. Henry Musselman, State Rep. Rob Junell of San Angelo, and John Eicher of Fort Worth explained the basic rules of polo play to their excited guests, who later as game spectators cheered wildly and did the wave.

"Every year brings a different and equally special blessing," McCloud said. "The weekend was one of hope and inspiration."

Saturday brought 1,500 M. D. Anderson supporters to the day-long festivities. They cheered the championship team, No Trees - Kelly Beal, Ciro Payan and Craig Duke of Midland, Hector Galindo of St. Louis - on to victory.

The fund-raising grand total for the history of the event climbed to $1.7 million. This year's proceeds will benefit research into the genetics of childhood cancer and skin cancer, The Anderson Network Hospitality Room, a carcinogenesis research library, an inspirational book produced by the Department of Chaplaincy and Pastoral Education at M. D. Anderson, and a breast cancer chemoprevention program at Hendrick Cancer Center.

Perfect weather by daylight transformed into a pleasant evening backdrop for the sounds of Cory Morrow, the hot new Texas country music star who motivated polo attendees young and old to their feet. The day concluded with sparkling fireworks underwritten by Tom Sikes and Mr. and Mrs. Richard Donnelly.

To receive information on Polo on the Prairie, contact 800/525-5841 or 713/792-3450.


© 2015 The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center