Karmanos Cancer Institute and Detroit Tigers honor survivors and promote breast health at 11th Annual Pink Out the Park game

Special event at Comerica Park promotes breast cancer screening and awareness

The Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, in partnership with the Detroit Tigers and McLaren Health Care, the official health care system of the Tigers, continues the tradition of “Pink Out the Park” during the Friday, May 12 game against the Seattle Mariners at Comerica Park. This special event has raised awareness for breast health for the past 11 years. Breast cancer survivors will be honored during a special pre-game ceremony on the field, with first pitch scheduled for 6:40 p.m.

Gates will open to Comerica Park at 5:10 p.m., and there will be a Pink Out the Park theme for the “Party in the Park” on the Comerica Landing, including a specialty cocktail, $5 food and drink specials, a DJ and more.  

Throughout the game and on the concourse, fans can engage in several initiatives, including a ceremonial first pitch, in-game awareness promotions and entertainment, and an on-field recognition ceremony honoring members of the Karmanos Breast Cancer Multidisciplinary Team (MDT) across the cancer center’s statewide network.

New to Pink Out the Park this year, a MEGA breast inflatable will be available for fans to engage and interact with. This larger-than-life, walk-through model of the human breast is a wonderful way to understand what breast cancer looks like, how screening and early detection can help with outcomes, and much more.

During the fourth inning, Tigers fans will have the opportunity to hold up “Pink Out the Park” cheer cards with the name of a loved one who has faced breast cancer during a tribute and moment of reflection. Both teams will also participate in the impactful annual recognition. Following the game, for the first time at a Pink Out the Park event, Friday Night Fireworks will be on display in the outfield.

“I am always inspired by the strength and perseverance of the women and men who undergo treatment for breast cancer. Cancer is blind to age, religion, skin color, and income level, but so too is grit and toughness,” said Eric Brown, M.D., FACS, co-leader of the Breast Cancer MDT at Karmanos. “Pink Out the Park is a wonderful way to honor and recognize these patients, their strength, and their success. It’s truly an honor to be trusted by patients to participate in their journey. They are my heroes.”

The first 15,000 fans through the gates will receive a Pink Out the Park pullover. Special Pink Out the Park ticket packages are available to support breast cancer research at Karmanos. Each ticket package includes tickets for the May 12 Tigers game, a pink Tigers bucket hat, and a $5 donation to Karmanos Cancer Institute. Visit tigers.com/pinkout to purchase.

Additional opportunities to donate will be available for Pink Out the Park. Fans can use a QR code to donate online at all of the Karmanos tables around the Comerica Park concourse. A portion of 50/50 raffle sales will also be donated to Karmanos.

Aside from skin cancer, breast cancer is the most common cancer in American women, according to the American Cancer Society (ACS). In the United States, women have a one-in-eight chance of developing the disease. In 2023, ACS estimates there will be 297,790 new cases of invasive breast cancer. That number has increased from the 2022 estimate, which was 287,850.

At Karmanos, the Breast Cancer MDT includes surgical oncologists, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, radiologists, pathologists, plastic surgeons, pharmacists, specialized nurse practitioners, dietitians, social workers, and genetic counselors. The team focuses entirely on treating breast cancer and shares its collective expertise to create a customized treatment plan for each patient.

In the fight against cancer, early detection is an important weapon since cancer is most treatable in its early stages. Many forms of cancer do not display symptoms at their onset, so screening tests help monitor for warning signs. Karmanos recommends an annual screening mammogram for all women of average risk beginning at age 40. Women with one or more risk factors should talk with their family doctor or a Karmanos expert about when to start screening for breast cancer.

Part of McLaren Health Care, the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute offers many screening resources for women at the Women’s Wellness Clinic in Detroit, the Karmanos Cancer Institute at the Lawrence and Idell Weisberg Cancer Center in Farmington Hills, and McLaren locations near 12 additional sites across the Karmanos Cancer Network. Types of screening available throughout the health system include 3D mammography, breast ultrasound, such as the SoftVue™ 3D Whole Breast Ultrasound Tomography System in Detroit, and breast MRI. Karmanos’ high-risk breast assessment given to women in Detroit and Farmington Hills allows specialists to understand a patient’s risk for developing additional cancers, such as lung, ovarian and colon.

Patient referrals are not needed to receive a screening mammography at Karmanos or McLaren locations. To request a mammogram appointment or learn more, visit karmanos.org/cancerscreening or call 1-800-KARMANOS.