Timbers team with Providence to get fans involved in The Pink Glove Dance

Thousands take part in special breast cancer awareness event

Pink Glove Dance, Timbers vs. Independiente, 7.26.11

Photo Credit: 
Photo by Steel Brooks

Nearly two years ago, the Providence St. Vincent Medical Center in Portland grabbed national headlines with an entertaining, if unorthodox, YouTube campaign. The video featured a plethora of employees — always wearing a smile — participating in a choreographed dance to pop music hit “Down” by R&B crooner Jay Sean. In the performance, Providence employees are featured wearing pink surgical gloves. This fashion choice was not made in vain; in fact, the music video was initiated as a light-hearted effort to raise awareness for breast cancer.

While the dancing in the video is a bit goofy, the results of the production were anything but. The video has received over 13 million views, and successfully spread word about breast cancer while simultaneously giving health care providers a chance to display a side of their personalities not often seen by the public.

Providence was thrilled by the awareness generated by their video, but decided to take their moves to a new platform by sharing them with an integral part of the Portland community: Timbers fans. During a friendly match between the Timbers and Argentine side Club Atlético Independiente on July 26, Medline Industries teamed with Providence to provide every fan at the game with a pair of pink surgical gloves as they entered the gates.

At halftime of the Timber’s 2-0 victory, fans were encouraged to join a crew of Providence employees in doing their own dance as music blasted across the stadium. Just as the YouTube phenomenon caught on quickly, so did the Pink Glove Dance at JELD-WEN Field.

“When we were handing out gloves at the door, almost every single person took gloves,” said Amy Moore, a nurse in the internal medicine unit of Providence. “To see everybody put them on and dance with us, it makes it worthwhile.”

The Timber’s Army joined thousands of other fans of all ages that weren’t shy to let their pink hands fly. In typical Portland fashion, citizens from all walks of life were quick to set down their beer, banner or bratwurst to take a moment to rally for an admirable cause.

“One in three women are diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. So it’s to get the conversation going,” said Martie Moore, Chief Nursing Officer at Providence. “The other part is to have fun. Because the thing is when you’re going through breast cancer, you’ve gotta have support and fun.”

Providence encourages fans to take other small steps to help make breast cancer awareness a part of their lives.

“They can join us in the (Susan G. Komen) Race for the Cure in September, they can go to our website,” Martie Moore said. “Were on Facebook, the Pink Glove Dance is on Facebook — there are lot of things people can do. So we absolutely want people to get involved.”

Providence has proven its dedication to the Timbers by becoming one of the franchise’s founding partners and placing a 12,000-square-foot sports care center on 18th avenue at the corner of JELD-WEN Field. It’s fitting that Tuesday gave Timbers fans a chance to rally and provide Providence with an assist of their own.

“It was awesome, it was just absolutely incredible to see all those pink hands raised, dancing, and really coming together as one,” Martie Moore said. “That’s really what it’s about: community.”