After a decade of fundraising success, the MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center Foundation is building upon its “Dancing for Our Stars” Gala by introducing a unique annual theme tied to its fundraising cause.

The inaugural theme, “Waltzing for a Cure,” will welcome masked guests, dressed in their finest attire, to dance the night away at Long Beach’s only masquerade gala while raising funds for the MemorialCare Todd Cancer Institute at Long Beach Medical Center.

“Our MemorialCare Todd Cancer Institute treats more than 1,800 newly diagnosed patients each year,” says John Bishop, CEO, Long Beach Medical Center. “Almost everyone in our community has been personally touched by cancer, which is why this year’s theme is near and dear to many hearts.”

The favorite elements of “Dancing for Our Stars” will remain, including the dancing showcase. However, this year’s dancers will be community leaders whose own life, or that of a loved one, has been personally touched by cancer. Each community member will again be teamed with a professional dancer to choreograph and perform a theatrical dance — this year blending freestyle and waltz in a musical genre of their selection.

“Our dancers will not only raise critical funds for those currently battling cancer, but have a unique opportunity to honor loved ones or triumphantly show their strength as a cancer survivor,” says Sharon Thornton, president, MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center Foundation. “With this gala being tied so closely to the cause, we’re hoping to show that no matter where someone might be on their cancer journey, we as a community are with them.”

Several other exciting new elements are being added to transport guests into a mysterious and magical evening. Gala guests will be invited on the dance floor to test their dancing skills with a group dance lesson featuring a dramatic, upbeat and whimsical waltz. A “Raise a Mask” live fundraising element will challenge attendees to fund MemorialCare Todd Cancer Institute’s equipment and program areas of greatest need.

“We’re so excited to be the beneficiary of the first themed ‘Dancing for Our Stars’ Gala,” says Cathy Kopy, executive director, MemorialCare Todd Cancer Institute, Long Beach Medical Center. “Our goal is to provide custom and targeted treatments for each patient while empowering them to achieve the best quality of life. Our efforts depend on the generosity of our community and this is such an exciting and fun way for them to stay connected to our mission.”

“Dancing for Our Stars” will take place on Friday, May 3 at 6 p.m. at the Hyatt Regency Long Beach. Sponsorship, underwriting and event program advertisement opportunities are available. For more information, contact the MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center Foundation at [email protected] or (562) 933-1660. Tickets are available for purchase.