More than 41 million women in the United States have cardiovascular disease.

Heart disease is the number one killer of women, and stroke is the number four reason for female deaths in the United States.

The Colorado Springs American Heart Association is getting ready to educate women about their risks – and how to prevent heart disease and stroke – at its annual “Go Red for Women” luncheon and education day Sept. 14 at the Antlers Hilton.


The event’s theme is “Fill Your Heart with what’s Important,” and captures one of the most important messages of the women’s education movement: 80 percent of heart disease can be prevented. Women need to make the right choices – diet, exercise and not smoking.

“In our busy worlds, our health often takes a back seat,” said Susan Davis, 2012 Go Red co-chairwoman. “Career and family often come first, and we usually put ourselves last. Through the programs, education and support provided by the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women campaign, we have the opportunity not only to improve our own health, but to positively impact that of others.”

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The day begins at 9:30 a.m. with screenings for cholesterol, blood pressure, BMI, glucose and more; interactive booths and demonstrations, education break-out sessions, a “survivor gallery” with stores from local survivors and a silent auction.

The luncheon takes place from noon to 2 p.m. This year, there’s a new “After Party” called the Red Dress Dash form 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

The Red Dress Dash will give guests a chance to unwind, kick off their shoes and enjoy a martini and four different activities. It’s free to anyone attending the luncheon.

This year’s keynote luncheon speaker is Mara Purl, a best-selling, award-winning author of the “Milford-haven novels.” A pioneer in small-town fiction for women, Purl also created the first American radio drama licensed and broadcast by the BBC, which has more than 4.5 million listeners in the UK. She is also a journalist, screenwriter, speaker, teacher and an actress.