The Shoppers Drug Mart Weekend to End Women's Cancers Announces the Rogers Centre as Host Venue for the 2013 Weekend as 2012 Event Finishes in Toronto

Largest multi-day walk for women's cancers in North America will create a first-of-a-kind experience for the 11th annual event and funds raised will support Personalized Cancer Medicine, including research, treatment advances and survivorship programs for all women's cancers at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre

TORONTO, Sept. 9, 2012 /CNW/ - The Shoppers Drug Mart Weekend to End Women's Cancers announced the Rogers Centre, home of the Toronto Blue Jays, will be the host venue for the 11th annual Weekend event, set for September 7th and 8th of next year.  The Princess Margaret shared news of the unique venue selection throughout the 2012 Weekend, which drew 4,590 participants to raise $10 million for The Campbell Family Cancer Research Institute at The Princess Margaret.

"We are absolutely thrilled the Rogers Centre has generously offered to host our 11th annual Shopper's Drug Mart Weekend To End Women's Cancers," said Paul Alofs, President and CEO of The Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation.

"This fantastic opportunity is thanks to the most generous support of the Rogers Centre, the Toronto Blue Jays, the Rogers family and Paul Beeston, Chief Executive Officer and President of the Toronto Blue Jays Baseball Club and Rogers Centre.  Each year we create an unforgettable event experience for our Weekend Walkers, who work tirelessly all year long to raise money, secure donations, plan fundraising events and recruit participants all in support of our mission at The Princess Margaret, to end cancer in our lifetime.  Being at the Rogers Centre is going to make our 2013 event very special and it is the perfect way to take The Weekend into its next decade," Alofs added.

The Princess Margaret plans to hold the opening ceremonies, overnight camp and closing ceremonies at the Rogers Centre on the playing field, under the retractable dome and says there are plans for a new 60 km route through downtown Toronto, along the Lake Ontario waterfront and through several neighbourhoods to be released next year.

"For ten years now, I have walked in the Weekend here in Toronto, and each year the experience gets bigger and better," said Gina Pace from Toronto, who underwent breast cancer treatment at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre.

"For me, the Weekend is personal because I have overcome breast cancer twice now.  The Weekend is great because nearly everyone here is dealing with cancer supporting someone with cancer.  Activities over The Weekend like the Friday Night Pre-Party or Saturday Evening Camp dinner enable us walkers to meet others with similar situations, converse, give comfort and be inspired, all while having some fun along the way. And now, to have such a massive and iconic venue like the Rogers Centre for next year speaks to just how large The Weekend has become.  I'm so excited and will be registering for 2013," Pace added.

Alofs said over 31,000 women will be diagnosed with either breast or gynecologic cancers this year in Canada, and over 8,000 will die from the disease.

"The $10 million raised this year will help fund Personalized Cancer Medicine for all women's cancers, including breast, cervical, endometrial and ovarian cancers at The Princess Margaret. Personalized Cancer Medicine allows us to detect cancer earlier, diagnose cancer more precisely, target cancer without damaging healthy tissue and support patients and families throughout their journey," Alofs added.

In 10 years, The Weekend has raised over $133 million for The Princess Margaret, and today, it is the largest multi-day walk for women's cancers in North America. The annual Weekend brings together communities of survivors and their supporters who spend months fundraising and training for the two-day walk.

This year, to commemorate the 10-year anniversary of The Weekend, the event included an unprecedented line-up of activities, including live performances by Juno Award-winning Canadian artist Divine Brown at the first-ever Weekend Pre-Party.  Five-time Juno Award winners and Grammy nominees Glass Tiger and Canada's premiere live disco tribute show-band, DiscoNation, performed at the Saturday evening camp, where participants enjoyed premium cuisine prepared and sponsored by Rose Reisman Catering and The Pickle Barrel. On Sunday, acclaimed tenor and musical theatre legend, Michael Burgess will perform at the event's Closing Ceremony.

"We put significant thought, care and detail into the planning and execution of The Weekend so everyone has an enjoyable and unforgettable experience," says Karen Adams, Director of Strategic Initiatives for The Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation.

"Most of our participants and their supporters have been affected by cancer, and giving them a weekend of pampering with massages and hot showers, inspirational speeches, healthy and nutritious food and world-class entertainment means they get to have some fun for a few days.  It is our way of honouring their fantastic achievements to help put an end to cancer," Adams added.

Registration for the 2013 Weekend opened on Saturday as Alofs addressed participants and announced that the 11th annual event will be held on September 7th and 8th of next year.

"We encourage everyone to join us next year for the 2013 Shoppers Drug Mart Weekend to End Women's Cancers.  Registration is now open, so please visit www.endcancer.ca or call 416-815-9255 to register today," Alofs added as thousands of participants cheered.

For more information or to register visit www.endcancer.ca or call 416-815-9255.

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About Princess Margaret Cancer Centre - CLICK HERE
About The Campbell Family Cancer Research Institute at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre - CLICK HERE
About The Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation - CLICK HERE

SOURCE: WEWC/RTCC/UA events c/o CauseForce

For further information:

MEDIA CONTACT:
Ailish Steele
Communications Manager
416.577.9255
asteele@endcancer.ca

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WEWC/RTCC/UA events c/o CauseForce

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