The trees around West Orange will be getting a serious makeover this month, sporting hot-pink ribbons tightly wound around their trunks.
To kickoff the beginning of Breast Cancer Awareness month, the township of West Orange, along with the North Jersey Affiliate of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure, tied 8-foot long ribbons on the municipal building on Main Street.
"It's very important to recognize the initiatives and the people who give so much of themselves to promote the initiatives and to promote awareness," said township Mayor Robert Parisi.
Breast cancer survivor Laura Facas Sullivan helped Parisi tie ribbons in a ceremony Thursday at 9 a.m. on the steps of the township's municipal building.
"Since I'm a breast cancer survivor — it's going to be one year on Saturday — it's very important to me," said Sullivan. "I'm very honored that Mayor Parisi asked me to be involved with it."
More ribbons will be tied to trees around various neighborhoods for the Tie a Ribbon for Breast Cancer Awareness campaign.
So far, 23,500 ribbons have been tied around New Jersey and more still are going up, said Colleen Miller, volunteer development manager at the North Jersey Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Morris, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union and Warren counties are participating in the ribbon campaign.
"The beauty of the campaign is the volunteers own it and some make it very big and some make it very subtle," she said. "But, the point is to raise awareness."
The Tie a Ribbon campaign is only one of several events in West Orange for cancer awareness. The township hosted the Mayor's Run/Walk for Ovarian Cancer Sunday. That event entered its twentieth year.
"It's important that the township, in my opinion, do what we can to promote," said Parisi. "Whether it's a 5K run or tie a ribbon, whatever we can do to support them."