By Anna Robertson Ham
Three, Two, One… Happy New Year! That’s right – it is almost time to ring in the new year. With that, comes deciding what to do and where to be when the clock strikes midnight. Why not celebrate the new year with a delicious dinner, dancing, great company and a good cause right here in our community?
This is exactly what Kelly Spalding had in mind for Williamson County when she was brainstorming the startup of a fun event that would benefit a cause that has affected millions, as well as her personally – breast cancer. Kelly is a wife, mother and the owner of Kelly Spalding Designs, where she works in interior design and party planning. She loves to entertain and saw a need for not only a local New Year’s Eve celebration, but a local event that raised funds and awareness for breast cancer health and research. “I love a good New Year’s Eve party and there wasn’t one in Franklin, so I decided, what better way to celebrate my mom then by throwing a great event…a party with a purpose,” says Kelly.
“We’ve all been touched by cancer in some way. My first experience was my mother’s diagnosis while I was in college, then again with her in 2000 when it came back. For eight years, she went in and out of remission. Then she lost her battle on Christmas Eve of 2008 at my home in Franklin. I wanted to do something and I had been doing charity events for a few local nonprofits, so I knew I could do one in memory of my mom that would help people fighting breast cancer, and The Pink Gala was born,” she explains.
The Pink Gala benefits the Breast Health Center at Williamson Medical Center, which is one of the leading centers in the area. “My friend, Brandy, and I were talking about who I should give the money to and I knew I wanted to keep it local, so she googled local breast cancer agencies and the Breast Health Center at Williamson Medical popped up. Neither one of us knew that it existed, and I had been involved with my mom’s search for clinical trials. I knew if I wasn’t aware of a top-ranked breast cancer center in our community that a lot of women didn’t know about it. My goal was, one, to raise money and, two, to raise awareness for the Breast Health Center,” Kelly says. “In 2012, I was diagnosed with breast cancer, and then the work I had done with them became even more important and meaningful to me. I am now even more determined to help improve the lives of women impacted by breast cancer in our community,” she says. “There are a lot of people fighting breast cancer who don’t have strong families and friends behind them. The Breast Health Center and Chemo Relief Kits and even the empathy can make a huge difference in their lives. Every bit of support for The Pink Gala goes to that effort.”
This will be the third Pink Gala event. It began in 2010 and took place again the following year, but was tabled until now due to health issues that arose for Kelly. “We had two successful events in 2010 and 2011, but when I was diagnosed (with breast cancer), I put the Gala on the back burner. Bringing it back this year has been exciting. It is a year’s worth of planning, but I am always happy to see it all come together and for the attendees to have a great time.”
Guests can expect an evening of fabulous food by Catering and Events by Suzette, dancing the night away to the band Burning Las Vegas, as well as an incredible silent auction. There will be beer, wine and a signature cocktail to enjoy, along with a champagne toast at midnight.
Tickets for The Pink Gala can be purchased online at ThePinkGala.com or by check at Kelly Spalding Designs located at 915 Columbia Avenue in Franklin. If you can’t attend the Gala this year, then consider purchasing a pink feather boa in memory of or in honor of someone you know who battled breast cancer. The boas will be displayed at the Gala. Learn more at ThePinkGala.com.