As cooler, fall temperatures herald the arrival of October, it’s time to once again raise awareness of breast cancer.

Rapides Cancer Center and Rapides Regional Medical Center are inviting the Central Louisiana community to join hospital employees as they “Paint the Town Pink” on Friday, Oct. 3. To show your support for breast cancer patients throughout Cenla, all you have to do is wear your favorite pink dress, shirt, tie – or even socks.

 “In the United States, a woman has a 1 in 8 risk of developing breast cancer in her lifetime. This year alone, 39,520 women and 450 men will die from breast cancer,” said Theresa Hood, RNC, Director of Education.

“By wearing pink, we can show that we’re aware of that statistic. But we can also wear pink in celebration of the fact that when caught early, the five-year survival rate for breast cancer is 98 percent when in 1982, it was 74 percent.”

The key emphasis during the month is preventing breast cancer.

“During the month, we have an opportunity to remind women of the importance of scheduling a yearly mammogram and tell women and men, of all ages, how they can support the fight against breast cancer,” said Hood.

To make the idea of that yearly mammogram a little sweeter, Rapides Regional Medical Center is once again making mammograms a “Piece-A-Cake.”

For every woman who completes a screening mammogram at Rapides Regional Medical Center during October, they will receive a free pink Mason jar tumbler and a coupon for a free cupcake from Piece-A-Cake bakery in Pineville.

“Our hope is that women will call their doctor, make the appointment and tell their friends,” Hood said.

RRMC is also offering free community education materials and speakers for groups planning Breast Cancer Awareness events during October. Just call 769-4027 to make a request.