Popular backyard game center piece for Orlando cancer research fundraiser

Cornhole tournament raises $30,000 for cancer research

ORLANDO, Fla. – Lisa Burrows is this week's Getting Results Award winner.

Burrows started the Fran Burrows Play For Purple Cornhole Tournament in 2013 to honor her mom and raise money for pancreatic cancer research. Burrows lost her mom in 2012 to the disease. She was 65. 

"It was devastating," she says. "She fought very hard."

Cornhole is a lawn game in which players take turns throwing bags of corn at raised platforms with a hole in the far end. 

Burrows had the idea of raising funds with a small gathering at her home. That event never happened, ambition got the best of her and a 32 team tournament was held that first year. 

The Play for Purple Cornhole Tournament has been held annually at Gnarley Barley craft beer and sandwich shop in Orlando. This year 64 teams (128 players) competed for trophies and prizes. The event ,now in its fourth year, has raised $35,000. Funds go to the Pancreatic Cancer Action network.  

Burrows was nominated for the Getting Results Award by friend Cassie Sonnefeldt. "She's trying to find a cure that she couldn't get in time for her mom," Sonnefeldt says. "Right after the tournament ends she's already planning for the next one."

According to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, more than 53,000 Americans will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer this year.  It is now the third leading cause of cancer death, with a five-year survival rate of just 8 percent.  Pancreatic cancer has the lowest relative survival rate of any major cancer.

Burrows says pancreatic cancer is the most under-funded, under-recognized and least-studied of all major cancer killers. She hopes her event will raise awareness and in a small way change that. 

"Each year we try to invest a little bit more," Burrows says. "We couldn't do it without the community and our really good friends that all appreciate what we're doing to fight pancreatic cancer."

If you would like to donate or participate in next year's event go to: playforpurple.com.


About the Author:

Paul is a Florida native who graduated from the University of Central Florida. As a multimedia journalist, Paul enjoys profiling the people and places that make Central Florida unique.