Golden girls joining celebs on runway to share The Heart Truth

Heart and Stroke Foundation's annual fashion show to highlight women's heart health at World MasterCard® Fashion Week in Toronto.

TORONTO, Feb. 20, 2013 /CNW/ - Celebrities, top fashion designers and some very special Canadian golden girls to showcase women's heart health at the sixth annual Heart Truth Fashion Show on March 21, as part of World MasterCard® Fashion Week in Toronto.

The Heart Truth Fashion Show will once again feature a stellar parade of Canadian celebrities from the worlds of sports, television, film and media, modeling one-of-a-kind creations by top Canadian fashion designers.

But this year, celebrities will share the spotlight with the winning nominees of The Heart Truth's Models of Health program. Three starring seniors will grace the runway to highlight that putting your heart health first is always in fashion, says Bobbe Wood, president, Heart and Stroke Foundation.

"At this year's Heart Truth Fashion Show, we want to show Canadian women what 'making health last' looks like in your senior years, so we've invited a few golden girls to strut their stuff and share their heart truth," says Wood. "We want all women to make heart healthy lifestyle choices now so they can lead a long, full and vital life with time and energy for family, friends and personal pursuits."

The three Models of Health slated to appear on the catwalk were chosen for exemplifying living well into their senior years as a result of making heart healthy choices throughout their lives. The program drew more than 245 entries from across Canada. Nominees included an impressive range of health role models, from a 91-year-old active sportswoman who's game for street-hockey, to an 86-year-old woman who splits time between swimming and university studies.

Photos and profiles of Model of Health nominees are featured at Survivors of heart disease and stroke will also be walking the runway, sharing their personal stories that highlight the need for women to make their own heart health a priority.

Models rocking the Red Dress for the cause this year include:

  • Margaret Abbott-Brown, Model of Health
  • Cheryl Bernard, Olympic Silver Medallist, Women's Curling;
  • Liona Boyd, singer/songwriter and guitarist
  • Erica Ehm, Publisher,;
  • Claire MacDonnell, Model of Health
  • Suhana Meharchand, Host, CBC News Network
  • Traci Melchor, Reporter, CTV's ETALK;
  • Melanie Nicholls-King, Actress, Global's Rookie Blue and The Wire
  • Janet Parr, heart disease survivor
  • Sandra Rinomato, HGTV Host and real estate broker
  • Jaime Salé, World Champion and Olympic Gold Medallist, Pair Skating;
  • Sonja Smits, Actor/Founder - Closson Chase Vineyards;
  • Stacey Tookey, 3 x Emmy Nominated Choreographer for "So You Think You Can Dance" U.S. & Canada
  • Jennifer Valentyne, LiveEye Host of City's Breakfast Television;
  • Gladys Wenger, Model of Health
  • Hayley Wickenheiser, Women's National Ice Hockey Team Captain and Four-Time Olympic Medallist; and
  • Nanette Workman, Rock and Blues Singer

The Heart Truth Fashion Show will bring the Red Dress to life on the runway Thursday, March 21 at 9 p.m., to close out the evening at Toronto's World MasterCard® Fashion Week at David Pecaut Square in downtown Toronto. Media are advised to save the date, and RSVP to by Friday, March 15.

This year, for the first time ever, a limited number of VIP tickets will be made available for purchase by the public exclusively at for $50/each. Proceeds will be donated to the Heart and Stroke Foundation's The Heart Truth campaign. Tickets are slated to go on sale on February 25 and will be available first come, first served.

For those who cannot attend the show in person, The Heart Truth campaign is streaming the fashion show live across the country on March 21 at 9 p.m. EST at and Canadians are invited to cheer their favourite ladies down the runway, and join the festivities on The Heart Truth's Facebook and Twitter #THTFS2013.

"We're encouraging women across Canada to celebrate the cause, get dressed up in red dresses and watch the online show from home with their friends," says Wood. "We've put together The Heart Truth viewing party toolkit, which includes everything from invites to games and trivia - everything you need to make a night of it - and it's available for download at"

About The Heart Truth campaign

The Heart and Stroke Foundation's The Heart Truth campaign calls on women to put their own health first by assessing their risk for heart disease and stroke, talking to their doctor, and making heart healthy lifestyle choices in order to enjoy a long and healthy life with their loved ones.

Heart disease and stroke is a leading cause of death for women in Canada,1 but most don't know it. Heart disease is not a "man's disease": women are more likely than men to die of a heart attack or stroke.

But by taking care of themselves and making incremental heart healthy lifestyle changes, women can reduce their risk of heart disease and stroke by as much as 80 per cent and make health last.

Women are encouraged to assess their risk for heart disease and stroke, and find questions to ask their doctor at Find community support at, heart health tips at and healthy lifestyle inspiration at TheHeartTruthCA.

The Heart Truth campaign gratefully acknowledges the support of founding sponsor, Becel, and contributing sponsors Chatelaine, Post Shredded Wheat, and Health Check™, without whom the program would not be possible.

About The Heart and Stroke Foundation

The Heart and Stroke Foundation (, a volunteer-based health charity, leads in eliminating heart disease and stroke and reducing their impact through the advancement of research and its application, the promotion of healthy living, and advocacy. Its vision is 'Healthy lives free of heart disease and stroke. Together we will make it happen.'


  1. Investing in Canada's Future 2003-2004, Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), 2004
  2. How to make sure the beat goes on protecting a woman's heart, Johnson PA, Manson JE -Circulation, 2005; 111: e 28-33

Media backgrounders, model and designer bios, high resolution images and broadcast quality video are available for download at

Image with caption: "The Heart Truth (CNW Group/HEART AND STROKE FOUNDATION)". Image available at:


For further information:

For media interviews, contact:

Edelman Toronto
(on behalf of Heart and Stroke Foundation)

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