Harrells Christian Academy hosted its 10th annual Pink Out games as part of the national Play 4 Kay initiative and in support of the Kay Yow Foundation.
This year’s slogan, “Cancer Walks the Plank,” brought a pirate theme to the Foundation Center as HCA hosted Cape Fear Academy in a slate of basketball games while raising money for cancer research.
Though final numbers raised will not be known for a few days, the students, led by the Senior Prefect Board of senior leaders, engaged in a variety of activities to raise money. Throughout the week, students waged a “Penny War” by putting money in jars that represented which teachers they wanted to see get a pie in the face at the Friday all-school pep-rally.
On game day, the large crowd that turned out could contribute to the cause through a silent auction, a half-court shot competition, a “Pass the Parrot” game, and by purchasing dinner from the Southern Smoke food truck, who is generously donating a portion of its proceeds to the cause. And the event could not have taken place without important lead sponsors: Dublin Winery of Rose Hill, Deacon Jones Automotive of Clinton, and Bill Carone Chevrolet, GMC, Buick of Wallace.
The most important moment of the evening came between the varsity games when co-curricular prefect Caroline Jones and athletic prefect Marlee Scronce led the community in prayer, honoring those in the room who have survived cancer and celebrating the lives of those who have passed away from the disease.
In addition, Chastity Melvin, former NC State All-American and now the Coordinator for Development for the Kay Yow Fund, addressed the crowd and shared her memories of legendary coach Kay Yow and her battle with cancer. She also thanked the HCA community for being her go-to example of how a small community can do big things, even relating a story where a donor significantly increased his donation after hearing the story of what Harrells Christian does with its Pink Out games.
“Harrells exemplifies the Play4Kay mission,” Melvin concluded.
“The Pink Out game has become a major part of our basketball season. Everyone looks forward to it and the students get really excited. It is also great for our Senior leaders to organize an event like this that benefits a cause that touches so many lives in our area and across the nation,” headmaster Andy Wells said.
Since the Kay Yow Fund’s inception, $5.38 million has been granted for scientific research focused on women’s cancers. The Play 4 Kay games hosted by colleges and high schools around the country are the organization’s largest fundraisers.