By Marie McAden
In celebration of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Beaufort Memorial Hospital is treating women to a Girls’ Night Out. The evening of fun will include music, games, wine and hors d’oeuvres, along with helpful information on breast care, nutrition and bone and joint health.
The free event takes place from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 20 at the Technical College of the Lowcountry. It is one of the signature programs created by Spirit of Women, a national network of American hospitals and health care providers committed to women’s health education and community outreach.
“This is not your typical health fair,” said Courtney McDermott, who helps coordinate the Spirit of Women program for BMH. “We call it ‘health-U-tainment’ because the event combines all of the things you love about a girls’ night out — great food, wine, friendship, music — with advice on how to improve your well-being.”
In keeping with this year’s theme, “Your Best Health Is in the Bag,” party organizers have developed a series of games that are both entertaining and educational.
At the “What’s in Your Bag” station, women will have a chance to see how much weight they are carrying around in their handbags — and how it can create back, neck and shoulder pain.
“We’ll ask each participant to set their purse on a scale,” McDermott explained. “If the handbag tips in over the recommended limit, our occupational therapists may suggest using a different kind of purse and exercises that can help strengthen their neck, shoulder and back muscles.”
The “Ta-Ta Toss” will focus on breast care. Women will answer a series of true or false questions by throwing a small pink bean bag into a cornhole board. Prizes will be awarded.
Physicians will be on hand to discuss any breast health issues that should arise from the game, including breast cancer risks, treatment and surgery. Breast care experts also will be demonstrating how to perform a proper breast self-examination using breast models. In addition, staff will be available to schedule mammograms at the new Women’s Imaging Center in Beaufort.
Among the other games planned for the evening is the “Wheel of Bone & Joint Health,” a roulette wheel with various categories of health-related questions. Participants who answer questions correctly will receive a prize. Everyone who plays will have the chance to win one of several grand prizes, including a Kate Spade handbag, custom-designed jewelry and gift cards.
Balance screenings also will be conducted throughout the evening in the bone and joint station.
Membership to Beaufort Memorial’s Spirit of Women is free and includes invitations to events like Girls’ Night Out and Day of Dance. Visit www.bmhsc.org/spiritofwomen or call (843) 522-5171 to register.