Pancakes for Parkinson's

Oct 16, 2015

On Saturday, Oct. 17, University of Virginia students will be hosting a fundraising event for Parkinson’s disease. Emily Richardson-Lorente has a preview.

It’s homecoming weekend at UVa, and that means it’s time … for pancakes. Specifically Pancakes for Parkinson’s. This annual fundraising event is the university’s largest — and probably most delicious — student-run fundraiser. This year, the 35-member student organizing committee is hoping to raise $65,000 -- $15,000 more than last year. Most of that money will come from sponsorships and online donations, but a good chunk should come from attendees who show up on the lawn Saturday morning to eat free pancakes, buy a T-shirt and donate some dough.

Pancakes for Parkinson’s started 12 years ago when an applicant to UVA promised to host a pancake fundraiser for a good cause if she was accepted. She was and she did. Since then, the annual event has been so successful that it’s raised more than $400,000 for Parkinson’s research. All of that money goes to the Michael J. Fox Foundation. Remember him?

MICHAEL J. FOX:  UVa’s Pancakes for Parkinson’s is a top Team Fox fundraiser …

That’s part of the video message he recorded last year to thank UVa students for their efforts. Like Michael J. Fox, more than 1 million people in the U.S. suffer from Parkinson’s. Marked at first by mild tremors, the degenerative neurological disorder ultimately progresses to complete physical incapacitation. There is no known cure, but there is hope.

Which is why this Saturday, students at UVa will be flipping pancakes and raising money to help fund research. They’ll also be squeezing in a tasty breakfast before their homecoming game against Syracuse. Which is something Michael J. Fox can get behind.

FOX: Have a great homecoming and alumni weekend. And put a lot of syrup on it. Love it.