Hospital, American Cancer Society Offer Rollin' With the Colon Community Event


Munson Medical Center and the American Cancer Society are celebrating Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month by hosting a free community event on Thursday, March 12.

Rollin’ with the Colon: A Colon Cancer Awareness Panel & Mini-Expo will take place from
4:30 - 7:30 p.m. at the Cowell Family Cancer Center, 217 S. Madison St., in Traverse City.

The event will spotlight colorectal cancer screening, prevention, and treatment – and will feature “Seymour,” a giant inflatable colon provided by the Calhoun County Cancer Control Coalition. Attendees will have the opportunity to walk through the room-sized colon and examine its various stages of disease — including Crohn’s, polyps, colon cancer, and more.

Munson Healthcare colon and gastrointestinal health experts also will share a brief presentation and panel discussion covering colorectal cancer statistics, risk factors, and screening guidelines. Panelists include:

  • Rex Antinozzi, M.D., gastroenterologist 
  • Lisa Bates, R.N., clinical coordinator/navigator 
  • Neil Forster, M.D., radiation oncologist 
  • Mike Megyesi, American Cancer Society 
  • Linda Meyer, R.N., colon cancer survivor
  • Richard Tooley, M.D., FACS, colorectal surgeon
  • Joshua Ruch, M.D., hematology oncologist 

Colorectal cancer patients and survivors will detail their journeys and join medical experts in taking audience questions.

Attendees will also find an educational mini-expo featuring educational booths from Munson Medical Center’s oncology, surgical, and patient support teams, and the American Cancer Society.  

“Colorectal Cancer is preventable, treatable, and beatable,” said Kathy LaRaia, Munson Healthcare executive director of oncology services. “Screening can prevent colorectal cancer through the detection and removal of pre-cancerous growths commonly known as polyps. Screening can also detect cancer at an early stage when treatment is more successful.”

“Fifty-five percent of colorectal cancers are attributed to modifiable risk factors including obesity, physical inactivity, long-term smoking, and consuming an unhealthy diet,” Kathy added. “Learn what you can do to prevent colorectal cancer and see the advanced treatments available on March 12 at the Cowell Family Cancer Center.” 

Appetizers and refreshments will be provided. No registration required. Directions are available at