Pawsitively 4 Pink perk brings Alisan Porter and more to Polar Park
My hairstylist introduced me to Worcester native Michelle Power in 2018 when her nonprofit, Pawsitively 4 Pink, was still in its infancy.
“Did you know that in the first year after diagnosis, women lose 26% of their annual income? Power asked me. “It’s an incredible loss and it jumps to 66% if they’re self-employed.” I was shocked.
Pawsitively 4 Pink is sort of an unlikely spinoff of Power’s dog-themed clothing brand. She started making and selling t-shirts featuring her beloved puppy Sheepadoodle shortly after her mother passed away from pancreatic cancer. Power saw the revenue as an opportunity to help women diagnosed with cancer. Since our first meeting, P4P has grown from a benevolent T-shirt fundraiser to an official 501(c)(3) with a dedicated Board of Directors and volunteer base. The team works tirelessly to help low-income women in treatment (or up to six months without treatment) cover their rent, pay their bills, get gas and find transportation.
With the help of P4P president Kathy Chapman, the organization expanded its fundraising schedule to include a golf tournament, 5k, drag queen party and meat raffle. “When we host events, I act as the day coordinator,” Chapman told me. “To be honest, I’m kind of a control freak anyway, so it works perfectly,” she joked.
On October 22 from noon to 8 p.m., P4P will host its biggest event yet – Rhythm for Ribbons at Polar Park. Entertainment will include R&B, soul and pop performances as well as acapella by Ball in the House, country music by Country Wild Band and old-school rock with On The Rocks Band. Other highly anticipated artists include Katie Kaden, The Dave Macklin Band and Ashley Jordan. “The Voice” alumni Ricky Duran and Alisan Porter are also set to take the stage.
The idea of seeing Porter play particularly intrigues me. I remember seeing her adorable 10-year-old face plastered across town when she starred opposite Jim Belushi in John Hughes’ 1991 comedy-drama, “Curly Sue.” Porter played a pint-sized crook with the voice of an angel. She then joined the original cast of the 2006 Broadway revival of “A Chorus Line.” Then in 2016, Porter won season 10 of The Voice, becoming the first contestant to triumph under a female coach, Christina Aguilera. Porter is a Worcester legend, and she brings him home for P4P.
Tickets are still available for Rhythm for Ribbons. Their price ranges from $40 to $500. You can read more about the work of Pawsitively 4 Pink on their website at https://pawsitively4pink.org/.