Big Stars and Pink Guitars to fight breast cancer

June 26, 2018

The first-ever Big Stars and Pink Guitars event was a little bit country, a little bit rock n’ roll and a ton of excitement for a great cause.

On April 4, donors filled The District, a music venue in Sioux Falls, for the opportunity to bid on incredibly unique Pink Firefly Guitars. The instruments, which resemble the pink ribbon synonymous with breast cancer awareness, each carry the autograph of an artist who has headlined the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center. Artists ranged from Alice Cooper to Toby Keith to James Taylor.

By the end of the night, more than $180,000 was raised for the Edith Sanford Breast Center. Every dollar will support cutting-edge breast cancer research and patient care across the Sioux Falls region.

“This is the first time we’ve been able to take the entire concept of the Pink Guitars and turn it into a true annual fundraiser,” said Erin Sanderson, development manager for the Sanford Health Foundation. “I’m enthusiastic about the future of this event.”


When passion and philanthropy meet

Pink Firefly Guitars are the creative endeavor of Kory Van Sickle, founder and frontman of Kory and the Fireflies, a Sioux Falls-based band that has shared the stage with countless national acts.

Van Sickle approached Edith Sanford in 2014 with the idea of using the guitars and his passion for music to help fight breast cancer. The partnership has since taken off, raising significant support for the cause.

“Pink Firefly Guitars are unique,” said Van Sickle. “They are custom designed, handcrafted, numbered and signed by some of the world’s top-selling artists.

“Because most of the artists have been touched by breast cancer, through a mother, sister or friend, they are happy to add their signatures to help raise money that will be invested directly into patient care and research.”

Sanderson has worked closely with Van Sickle over the past four years.

“He is such a musician at heart and extremely passionate about his work,” she said.

Edith Sanford has a new look online

The Edith Sanford Breast Center has launched a new website. Now it’s easier than ever to stay on top of your breast health, be in the know about the latest cutting-edge research and get involved with local events. Start exploring!