And it starts tonight.
In support of “Volley for a Cure 2011,” a brainstorm developed by the Lee University Volleyball Team and coach Andrea Hudson to draw attention to Breast Cancer Awareness Month, this is the second year that a Cleveland medical clinic is bringing the “Flamingo Flock” to community lawns.
In the past four years, Volley for a Cure has raised more than $80,000 for college scholarships and last year the inaugural flamingo flocking earned some $2,500, according to Zandra Whaley of The Plastic Surgery Clinic, which is sponsoring the pink birds.
Here’s how the lighthearted campaign operates.
Anyone wishing to have a friend’s or loved one’s yard flocked with pink flamingo figurines — whose flocks can range in size from 10 to 75 — should contact The Plastic Surgery Clinic at 472-1996 or 596-9159 and schedule a time for the victim’s flocking. Once the dates are set, specially trained volunteers — or “flockers” as they also are called — will show up overnight at the yard, strategically place the pink flamingos and then return late the following day to remove them in preparation for the next night’s flocking at another yard.
It’s an innocent and lighthearted way to raise funds for college scholarships for students who are cancer survivors or whose lives have been impacted by the disease, Whaley explained. Plus, the two-week flocking campaign, which ends Nov. 3, helps to raise awareness about breast cancer and it is a big supporter of “Volley for a Cure” which works on behalf of the MaryEllen Locher Scholarship Foundation.
Tonight is the first opportunity for flocking so Whaley urges Cleveland area residents who believe in the power of pink to get on the phones to The Plastic Surgery Clinic and give the volunteer flockers some work to do. Callers who would like to sponsor a flocking need only to say how many birds and how they’ll make payment. The fee is based on the number of flamingoes requested.
“We have called in more flockers (volunteers) this year,” Whaley confirmed with a laugh. “Last year, in our first year of pink flamingo flocking, we were so busy that we struggled to keep up with the community demand.”
The first year of any project includes a learning curve and this was the case with the “Volley for a Cure” flocking, Whaley noted.
This time, the army of pink flamingo figurines has been expanded and additional flockers whose common cause is community awareness and cancer prevention have been recruited.
“These are adorable pink flamingos whose flocking is being made possible by Dr. Michael Hoops and the ladies at The Plastic Surgery Clinic,” Whaley said. “We expanded our flamingo forces this year for two reasons. One, we needed more birds based on demand; and two, we lost several last year that were removed from yards.”
So, for those tempted to kidnap a pink flamingo in order to call it their own, Whaley respectfully asked them to overcome the urge.
“We need our flamingoes for the next yard, and they’re not cheap to replace when they go missing,” Whaley explained. “All that we ask is that others not remove or hurt our pink-feathered darlings. They’re working for a great cause.”
Pink flamingoes that go “MIF” (Missing In Flocking) have to be replaced the following year and the budget is limited.
Questions about the “Flamingo Flock” may be directed to the same Plastic Surgery Clinic phone lines.
work toward luncheon
Detailed information will be released later, but the next two weeks of flocking and the “Volley for a Cure” campaign are both leading up to the annual Cancer Survivors Luncheon scheduled for noon on Thursday, Nov. 3, in the Recreation Center on the Lee University campus, Whaley explained.
Luncheon tickets are $15 each. Guests will be treated to a meal and a small gift, and this year’s guest speaker will be popular comedian Karen Mills, a Bradley County native and graduate of Bradley Central High School.
With the comedian scheduled to deliver the keynote, Whaley said the event will be up-tempo.
A crowd ranging from 225 to 300 is expected to be accommodated at the luncheon. Tickets may be purchased by contacting Lee University volleyball coach Andrea Hudson at 614-8453.
Additional details will be announced, including information about the culmination of the “Volley for a Cure” celebration on the Lee University campus during the school’s Homecoming Weekend.