Fenton, MI — October 1, 2019
“The Power of Pink” runway fashion show was held Sunday, September 29 at Eclections in Fenton. The event raised $1,689 for Hurley’s Breast Cancer Patient Navigation Program! This is the third year the proceeds benefitted Hurley’s program and the sixth year overall that Eclections hosted a breast cancer fundraiser.
“All the money raised goes just to meet the essentials of getting through treatments. We’ve bought gift cards for gas to help cancer patients get to and from appointments. One single mom couldn’t afford to take off work. But, with our help she was able to recover at home. We paid her rent and her electricity bill so she could focus on getting better and not have to worry how she was going to pay the bills,” said Karin Burnett, co-chair of Pink Night Palooza, a large breast cancer fundraiser in Genesee County also benefitting Hurley.
A Cancer Survivor Helps Those Now Struggling with the Disease
Nicole Medich, owner of Eclections, came up with the idea to have a breast cancer fundraiser at the store shortly after she was diagnosed with breast cancer herself. She started with a pink party, which will be held again Oct. 17 of this year, in which a portion of all the store’s daily profits are donated to benefit Hurley’s Breast Cancer Patient Navigation Program.
“My husband had just died of melanoma. So, I was a single parent. I know how hard it is to be diagnosed with breast cancer. Although I was still able to put food on the table, I know the diagnosis can turn someone’s life upside down, especially when they are unable to work. The fashion show is a fun way to let people see fall fashion and the money raised will help women and men in Genesee County who have been diagnosed with breast cancer and are struggling.”
Hurley’s Breast Cancer Patient Navigation Program
The Hurley Breast Cancer Patient Navigation Program does not assist with treatment, but rather helps those in our community diagnosed with breast cancer to meet their financial needs. This often includes help with rent, groceries, utility bills and other everyday expenses.
“The fund helped one woman pay the property taxes on her home during her breast cancer treatment journey. With the help of the program, she was able to continue living in her home for a while before she finally passed away,” Medich said.
The eight models in the show each modeled five outfits. Each set of clothing was put together based on specific trends; classic black and white modernized, printed pants, animal prints, and everyday life. Medich chose the fashions worn.
“I know all the models’ styles and personalities. So, I based their outfits off that. Each model showed a different way the various trends could be worn. The models consisted of store employees, cancer survivors, a Pink Palooza committee member, and models who display fashions for our social media pages. I couldn’t do this without the models. They make the fashion show fun because they enjoy what they’re doing and they engage the audience,” Medich said.
She went on to say the fashion show is the hardest thing she does each year-but well worth it. For the event, she had to organize the models, accessorize their outfits, and even tear down walls in the lower level where clothing is normally displayed. Medich had pretty flower walls put up just for the show.
Fun and Fashion for a Good Cause
“It’s so much fun! It’s fashion, shopping, and wine tasting, plus giving back to a local charity. What more could you want?” said Amanda Felker, account executive for Cumulus Broadcasting, who is also on the committee for Pink Night Palooza. Amanda put on a lively presentation walking the runway as a model in the show.
Felker is a big city girl from England and she sees the Fenton-Flint community as an amazing place filled with people who like to give back! “Hurley is not about trying to cure cancer. That’s a big pill. They’re here for the people going through it, to help with their bills or whatever else they may be going through. It’s not just women. It’s men, too,” Felker said.
Jodie Burton is a cancer survivor who modeled in the show. She was first diagnosed in August 2017. After finding a lump in her breasts, she immediately called her doctor. She was diagnosed with stage three invasive ductal carcinoma. By the time she received the diagnosis, the cancerous tumor had grown very large. She was advised to do chemotherapy to shrink it. After 16 rounds of chemo, her doctors performed surgery in February 2018.
The medical staff believed they had gotten all of the cancerous cells. Burton had a double mastectomy and when the medical staff did the testing, the margins came back clear. Because Burton was diagnosed with stage three cancer, she also had to endure 30 rounds of radiation treatments. She had breast reconstruction surgery in January of this year. However, that has not gone according to plan. Because of the radiation, the skin was not healing properly and she will need further surgery.
“Nicole and I had similar things happen. She is such a positive person and an inspiration to me! When she asked me to do this it was totally out of my comfort zone…but it’s for a good cause. So, I said why not,” Burton said. She tried not to be emotional during the fashion show. “This means a lot. It was good to be able to help. A lot of times, people diagnosed with breast cancer are not in a position where they can work. This is going to help them. So, it can make a difference in someone else’s journey. The ladies here are wonderful! I’m glad I was also able to help in some way,” Burton said.
The show was done in honor of Jennifer Smiljanich, who passed away from breast cancer on April 14, 2019. Smiljanich’s husband spent time with Medich’s son on Saturdays while his mom was undergoing treatment and was not told the show would honor his late wife. “I was absolutely honored to be present at this wonderful occasion-to be with such loving, supportive people,” George Smiljanich said.
Fifteen vendors donated raffle prizes for the event ranging from a $35 gift box of socks with positive messages on them, to a pair of coats valued at $350 each. Both regular $5 raffle tickets were sold and $25 envelopes which, when purchased, guaranteed the winning of a prize. All the $25 envelopes were sold.
“I heard about the show from my cousin and I looked it up on Facebook. I thought it was fabulous. It was for a good cause and very entertaining. I hope it only grows in popularity!” said Holly Brown, one happy show attendee. Brown’s grandmother passed away from breast cancer about 10 years ago.
“I’m so grateful to our customers and friends who supported Hurley’s Breast Cancer Patient Navigation Program through purchasing tickets, participating in raffles and making donations. We are truly blessed to be able to help ease the burden for local individuals fighting the disease,” Medich said.
Individual Style, One Destination, shop the latest trends and everyday styles for men & women at Eclections in Fenton. Located at 495 N Fenway Dr. the shop is open 7 days a week.
Mon – Fri, 10:00am – 7:00pm
Saturday, 10:00am – 5:00pm
Sunday, 12:00pm – 4:00pm
You can also shop online at https://eclectionsboutique.com/