UT MD Anderson fun run goes dark to highlight importance of skin cancer prevention

MD Anderson News Release 09/12/12

Runners and walkers will hit the streets for the fifth annual AIM for a Cure Melanoma Walk and Fun Run, an event hosted by The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, at a new evening time Sept. 22 at 7:30 p.m., to emphasize the importance of sun safety.

The 5K non-certified run begins outside MD Anderson's Lowry and Peggy Mays Clinic, located at 1155 Pressler St., and winds through the Texas Medical Center.  Participants will join cancer survivors, patients and family members to support MD Anderson's melanoma research efforts.

"This is the first time the event will be hosted in the evening, which we thought was important to underscore an aspect of skin cancer prevention," said Jeffrey E. Lee, M.D., professor and chair of the Department of Surgical Oncology. "We'd like participants to walk away with a greater appreciation for simple steps that make a difference, such as staying out of the sun at peak hours."

Following the race, a variety of events will educate participants about skin cancer, including guest speakers Jeffrey E. Lee, M.D. and Jean Schlipmann, co-founder of the AIM at Melanoma Foundation.

Additionally, free skin cancer screenings will be available from 6-9 p.m. on a first-come, first-served basis. Other race day activities include sunscreen application demonstrations, a kids' zone and various food vendors. Live entertainment will be provided by Chemo Sabe, a grassroots organization supporting cancer survivors through music performances.

Melanoma is one of the most commonly diagnosed and most dangerous forms of skin cancer. According to the American Cancer Society, more than 76,000 new cases of melanoma will be diagnosed in 2012.  Unlike some common cancers, melanoma has a wide age range distribution, occurring in both younger and older men and women.

To register for the run, visit www.aimatmelanoma.org, click on "participate in a fundraiser" and select "Texas."  For more information regarding the 5K, call 713-745-1804 or email aimforacure@mdanderson.org.  No entrance fee is required, but participants are encouraged to raise at least $50. Free event parking will be located in the Pressler Garage, across the street from the Mays Clinic at 1180 Pressler. 09/12/12