“Paint the Town Pin’’ free contest signup due Friday; décor must be ready by Feb. 1

A new “Paint the Town Pink” citywide contest is aiming to add more pink around Austin in the coming weeks, helping to raise awareness and support for The Hormel Institute’s world-renowned breast cancer research.

This Friday is the signup deadline for each of the three categories – home, business or nonprofit – in the first “Think PINK – Show Your Spirit” decorating contest organized by the Austin Convention & Visitors Bureau and the “Paint the Town Pink” steering committee. There is no fee for entering the contest.

Registered participants will have until Jan. 28 to get décor setup and ready on their home, business or nonprofit for judging. Only registered participants will be considered for prizes.

Austin’s 2nd annual “Paint the Town Pink” citywide initiative officially will run from Feb. 1-10. Last year, “Paint the Town Pink” raised more than $62,500 in support for The Hormel Institute’s cutting-edge breast cancer research in Austin, and this year’s “pink” effort has been growing even more.

“Think pink for your home, business or nonprofit organization to show your support for The Hormel Institute’s research focused on ways to prevent and control breast cancer,” said Cheryl Corey, Executive Director of the Austin Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Winners from each category will receive tickets to the Austin Bruins’ 3rd annual “Paint the Rink Pink” hockey game – the main event of “Paint the Town Pink” – on Saturday, Feb. 2, at 7 p.m., where they also will be announced to what’s expected to be another sellout crowd of about 2,000 people. Each winner also will get, among other prizes, tickets to St. Olaf Church’s 2nd annual “Pink Pancakes & Spam” breakfast on Sunday, Feb. 3.

Judges will determine the winners by Friday, Feb. 1, using criteria consisting of creativity, originality, most festive, humorous, best message, best use of lights, most pink and overall appeal.

To enter, complete the application form and return it no later than Friday, Jan. 18, to the Austin Convention & Visitors Bureau, 104 11th Ave. N.W., Austin, MN, 55912. Forms can be faxed to 507-433-1052.

On each form, indicate if you are entering your home, business, nonprofit organization or more than one of them.

For more information on “Paint the Town Pink” events and fundraisers, visit the Austin Convention & Visitors Bureau’s website at: www.austincvb.com

With one of the top scientific publishing records, The Hormel Institute, University of Minnesota – Mayo Clinic is a world-renowned cancer research center conducting research focused on discoveries leading to the prevention and control of cancer. Its scientists are focused on investigating how cancer works and what nontoxic, natural compounds can be used to prevent and control cancer.

The BioScience Triangle growing the collaborative partnership between the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, Mayo Clinic-Rochester and The Hormel Institute-Austin is continuing to expand, with plans for a major expansion in 2013 at the Institute to add more research labs and better space for its International Center of Research Technology.