Mama's Night Out Santa Cruz

Powerful. Strong. Inspiring. Glitter. These four words are what best describes Mama’s Night Out’s 4th year in a row of raising funds for pediatric cancer research. This was my first time attending Mama’s Night Out, and it was an evening full of beautiful women whose individual stories tugged at the heart strings and inspired you to want to make a difference. I was joined by four amazing women, one of whom will be a new Mama later this year, expecting her first.

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Walking into the event made you feel like you were walking the red carpet with your glamorous gal pals. First, taking a photo in front of the sponsors sign followed by checking in to receive all the information and wine glasses you would need for the evening. Once you entered, you could walk right into the Mama lounge and taste one of the many delicious wines being poured by ONE HOPE wines, Beauregard and more. Should you need to accessorize, there was beautiful jewelry to try on, and if you were feeling adventurous (I mean fitness motivated), you could sign up for the Precision Wellness Center at Cabrillo College.

If you headed left, you could purchase raffle tickets to enter to win some of the most amazing raffle prizes I’ve ever seen (and let me tell you, I love me a raffle!!) Aromas of wonderful smelling food and sweets from Gales Bakery, Red Apple Cafe, Pacific Cookie Company, Driscoll’s and more filled the air. The talented and fabulous DJ, Alchemy Productions! dropped beats everyone at any age could get down to on the dance floor and we all got the opportunity to spread a little glitter.

Photo from Mama's Night Out Facebook page
Photo from Mama’s Night Out Facebook page

As some of you may know, we work very closely with Cookies for Kids’ Cancer and attending the event and hearing the influential Mama’s speak about their children’s lives made me so proud to do what I do everyday. It made my job more special than I could ever imagine. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house while the Warrior Mama’s gave their beautiful and eloquent speeches, highlighting the unforgettable memories their children gave to them.

Libby Kranz was one of the Warrior Mama’s and the speech she gave was powerful, raw, emotional and extremely positive for everything she had been through with her beautiful daughter Jennifer. Losing her, just three short months ago. Her strength was inspiring and her speech was beautiful, detailing the days she spent with her daughter who was beyond full of life and love. You can read more about her on her blog Love 4 JLK, here. Her speech was not only emotional, detailing the life she had been blessed to spend with by her daughter Jennifer, but it was also educational and full of glitter. (There is now glitter all over my home, and every time I see the sparkly specks, it reminds me of Jennifer, they put a smile on my face and remind me to contribute to a cause bigger than myself.)

LOVE 4 JLK
Photo from LOVE 4 JLK

Her daughter Jennifer was diagnosed with DIPG on her 6th birthday, age 6 also happens to be the average age in which most children are diagnosed with cancer. Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma is a tumor located in middle of the brain stem. The median overall survival of children diagnosed with DIPG is approximately 9 months.  Every day seven children die from cancer, seven. Leaning this and knowing that pediatric cancer is the least funded of all cancer research brought me to tears, it’s just not fair. This was absolutely the most shocking information, and it made me so angry knowing that the lack of funding isn’t made more aware or publicized. The future of this world is so dependent on us, this statistic is extremely sad. We are the difference and the change, we can do something about this.

If you were inspired to do more by the awakening Cookies for Kids’ Cancer video, or by the commanding speeches by the amazing Warrior Mamas, please sign up for the Mamathon, you too can spread the glitter and raise awareness and funds for pediatric cancer.

Mama's Night Out Mamathon

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