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Ron Foley Foundation to hold ‘Park ‘n Picnic’ for Pancreatic Cancer 

Schematic of the Ron Foley Foundation Park 'n Picnic at Folly Farm. Courtesy image

The West Hartford-based Ron Foley Foundation, which was unable to hold ‘Ron’s Run for the Roses’ this year, will host a new community event on Sept. 12.

Schematic of the Ron Foley Foundation Park ‘n Picnic at Folly Farm. Courtesy image


The Ron Foley Foundation was forced by COVID-19 to cancel their keystone Kentucky Derby-themed fundraiser, Ron’s Run for the Roses, in May but they have found a new and unique way to raise much-needed funds to support the fight against pancreatic cancer, with an exciting community event that takes into consideration safe practices and social distancing. 

On Saturday, Sept. 12, the West Hartford-based non-profit that raises funds for pancreatic cancer medical research promotes awareness through education, and provides direct financial aid to those suffering from pancreatic cancer will host a drive-in style, “Park ‘n Picnic for Pancreatic Cancer” at Folly Farm in Simsbury, CT.

The event, to be held from 3-6 p.m., will offer limited in-person tickets. A livestream will allow participants to attend virtually.

The festivities will be led by WTNH News 8 Co-Chief Meteorologist Joe Furey, along with Presenting Sponsor, New Country Motor Cars Vice-President Tim Parker.

Along with the exciting live and silent auctions, this year the Foundation is thrilled to welcome two-time Tony Award-winning actor/director and Honorary Chair James Naughton (who is a graduate of West Hartford’s Conard High School), who will also be performing live at the event. Naughton lost his wife to pancreatic cancer, so support of the Foundation is near and dear to his heart.

This is the Foundation’s only major fundraiser for 2020.

In keeping with state and local guidelines, the event steering committee has thoughtfully planned out traffic flow, car spacing, and the placement of a large video screen to ensure guests can fully enjoy the event and festivities safely.

In-person tickets include a personal picnic basket containing appetizers, dinner, and dessert prepared by Russell’s Creative Global Cuisine as well as cocktails and a picnic blanket. There are also options for those who may not be able to attend but would like to picnic-at-home to view and participate in the event remotely. 

Barbara Foley, president and founder of the Foundation explained the event concept: “During these difficult times I feel it’s extremely important to maintain a sense of community, safely and responsibly, and to continue to support the mission of the Foundation. Now, more than ever pancreatic cancer patients need our help.”

To view a video of the COVID-19 safety precautions planned for the event, click here.

Pancreatic cancer is the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States. According to the American Cancer Society, about 57,600 Americans will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2020. Approximately 47,050 will die from this awful disease during that same time. Pancreatic cancer has the highest mortality rate of all of the major cancers – 94% of patients will die within five years of diagnosis and only 10% will survive more than five years. Seventy-four percent of patients die within the first year of diagnosis.

The Foundation was established in 2010 in memory of Ron Foley, a respected business leader in the community and a former Travelers executive, who died from pancreatic cancer in 2005. Barbara Foley, the Foundation’s president, and Ron’s widow leads this volunteer-based organization. Since 2009, the Foundation has raised more than $2.8 million dollars to support its mission.

To purchase tickets to attend in-person or virtually, to donate a picnic basket to honor someone, or for more information about “Park ‘n Picnic for Pancreatic Cancer” and the Ron Foley Foundation, please contact them at 860-521-0500, [email protected], or visit their website www.ronsrun.org.  The Foundation’s office is at 1000 Farmington Ave., Suite 108A, West Hartford, CT 06107

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