Colon Exhibit Aims to Raise Awareness of Cancer Screenings

Mar. 4, 2014

It’s not often the public gets to walk through a larger-than-life-size colon, but that’s exactly what Rochester residents will be able to do this weekend when the inflatable 10-foot tall, 30-foot long Giant Colon makes a stop at Marketplace Mall from March 7 to 9.

The Cancer Services Program of Monroe County, part of the University of Rochester Medical Center’s Center for Community Health, in partnership with Cancer Mission 2020, led by Camp Good Days and Special Times, are joining forces to bring the Giant Colon exhibit to Rochester, in recognition of Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. The interactive exhibit teaches people about the risks, symptoms, prevention and early detection of colorectal cancer, which is 90 percent curable when detected early.

To promote this free educational exhibit, sponsored by New York State Assemblyman Harry B. Bronson, there will be a news conference at 11 a.m. Saturday at the Marketplace Mall (wing that formerly housed BonTon). Representatives from the Cancer Services Program, Cancer Mission 2020, Monroe County, the City of Rochester, Rochester General Hospital, and Us Too Rochester NY, a local prostate cancer support group, will gather with Bronson to raise awareness of colorectal cancer. The county executive and the mayor of Rochester also will announce a joint-proclamation declaring March “Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month” in Rochester and Monroe County. 

In addition to “touring” the Giant Colon for an interactive look at the different stages of colon cancer, visitors can speak to a doctor and pick up information about cancer screenings, as well as free at-home screening kits.

March, being National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, takes on even more significance this year as it was recently announced that cancer is now the leading cause of death in Monroe County and colorectal cancer is the second leading cancer killer in Monroe County. On average each year, 370 Monroe County residents are diagnosed with colorectal cancer and about 140 die from it. Yet it can often be prevented. Regular screenings for men and women ages 50 and older can find precancerous polyps so they can be removed before they become cancer.

The Cancer Services Program of Monroe County is a state-funded program that pays for breast, cervical and colorectal cancer screenings for uninsured men and women ages 40 and older who cannot pay for screenings and who meet income eligibility and age requirements. For more information about Cancer Services Program of Monroe County, please visit

Cancer Mission 2020…The End of Cancer by the End of the Decade and its official website,, was launched in December 2010 by Gary Mervis, along with a large number of community leaders and concerned citizens. Cancer Mission 2020 is built upon three key components: Information, call to action, and accountability.