By L'Oreal Thompson, The Baltimore Sun
3:48 PM EST, February 12, 2013
Brides-to-be can browse hundreds of designer and gently worn wedding gowns at the Brides Against Breast Cancer "Tour of Gowns" this Valentine's Day weekend at the Sheraton Baltimore City Center Hotel.
"These brides are really progressive because they can buy their dresses anywhere, but they choose Brides Against Breast Cancer because it supports a great cause," says Amy Paulishak, vice president of business development for Brides Against Breast Cancer. "Every time a bride finds her gown, we ring a bell and the DJ makes an announcement. We try to make it a special experience."
The Florida-based nonprofit donates 71 cents from every dollar raised during its traveling bridal show to free programs and services for people affected by cancer, according to Paulishak.
A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Cancer Support Foundation, which provides financial resources and counseling for people receiving cancer treatment in the Baltimore area. Breast self-exam cards are distributed to every participant at the event.
"The average bride is 26 and one of the largest factors in breast cancer diagnosis is age," says Paulishak. "Most women who are diagnosed with breast cancer are over 45 and 50, so for us, this is a great opportunity to reach out to these young girls and give them information and provide resources if they know someone impacted by cancer."
All of the gowns, which are available in size 0 to 30, are discounted on average 50 percent and range from $99 to about $3,500. For brides on a budget, there is layaway and the gowns are tax-free. If you’ve already said, "I do," you can donate your gown at the show to receive a tax deduction.
On Friday, Feb. 15, brides can shop during the Pink Power hours of 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. for $25 and receive exclusive access to the gowns, as well as food and drinks. Admission is tax deductible. General admission for Saturday’s show from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. is $5. Tickets are required. Please visit bridesabc.org to register.
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