SAN Francisco, CA – The Parkinson’s Foundation will host the 10th annual Moving Day San Francisco on Saturday, May 4, 2024, at Crissy Field. More than 400 people are expected to take part in movement demonstrations and a 5K walk to beat Parkinson’s. The family-friendly, in-person event is one of 45 Moving Days taking place across the country in 2024. Funds raised through Moving Day support cutting-edge research, improved quality of care and education programs to improve the lives of people with Parkinson’s disease and their families.
Moving Day is more than just a walk. It is a celebration of movement, which is critical in battling the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease (PD). The event in San Francisco will be fun and inspiring, including demonstrations of dance and other movement disciplines to warm up the crowd for the walk. It is estimated that one million people in the U.S. are living with Parkinson’s, with approximately 90,000 people newly diagnosed each year. Moving Day events across the country have raised nearly $40 million supporting the Parkinson’s Foundation’s mission to make life better for people with Parkinson’s disease.
This year the California Chapter of the Parkinson’s Foundation will honor Cecelia Beam, Faculty of San Francisco Ballet School, manager and lead teacher of SF Ballet School’s Dance Class for People with Parkinson’s, and team co-captain of the School’s Shake, Rattle and Pointe fundraising team for Moving Day San Francisco.
Under the auspices of the Ford Foundation, Cecelia Beam began her training in the Bay Area with Tricia Kaye, who trained and danced under the direction of SF Ballet founder Willam Christensen. Cecelia later received training at School of American Ballet in New York City and graduated from the high school ballet program at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. After dancing in Oakland, North Carolina, Indiana and New York, Cecelia set her sights on teaching and earned a master’s degree in ballet at Indiana University and has taught ballet at universities and private ballet schools, including Mills College, Indiana University, and San Francisco Ballet School.
When asked why she is supporting the Parkinson’s Foundation and Moving Day, Cecelia says, “Teaching and developing San Francisco Ballet School’s Dance Class for People with Parkinson’s has been a career highlight. I am forever grateful to former School Director Patrick Armand who welcomed the Parkinson’s community into the studios more than 5 years ago. With generous funding from the Parkinson’s Foundation, we can provide our Parkinson’s dancers with studio and virtual classes, community building opportunities, and performance tickets all free of charge.”
Cecelia and the Shake, Rattle and Pointe team have raised over $29,000 for Moving Day San Francisco since 2019.
Fundraising at the walk is important but so is the social aspect. “Moving Day is vital not only because it is our largest fundraising event of the year, but because it brings the Parkinson’s community together,” said Gena Lennon, Development Director for PF’s California Chapter. “This community really supports each other and Cecelia does an amazing job bringing energy and hope to all her dancers,” she continued.
To learn more about Moving Day San Francisco and how you, your family and friends, and your company can get involved, please visit MovingDaySanFrancisco.org. Moving Day is made possible, in part, through the generous support of national and local partners.
About the Parkinson’s Foundation
The Parkinson’s Foundation makes life better for people with Parkinson’s disease by improving care and advancing research toward a cure. In everything we do, we build on the energy, experience and passion of our global Parkinson’s community. Since 1957, the Parkinson’s Foundation has invested more than $400 million in Parkinson’s research and clinical care. Connect with us on Parkinson.org, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or call (800) 4PD-INFO (473-4636).
About Parkinson’s Disease
Affecting an estimated one million Americans and 10 million worldwide, Parkinson’s disease is the second-most common neurodegenerative disease after Alzheimer’s and is the 14th-leading cause of death in the United States. It is associated with a progressive loss of motor control (e.g., shaking or tremor at rest and lack of facial expression), as well as non-motor symptoms (e.g., depression and anxiety). There is no cure for Parkinson’s and 90,000 new cases are diagnosed each year in the United States alone.