Peoria, IL,
13:02 PM

“Twist Away” Childhood Cancer

September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month which makes it the perfect opportunity for National Twist Day September 21.

Music legend Chubby Checker, whose smash "The Twist" first topped the Billboard Hot 100 chart for a week on September 19, 1960, has partnered with Mascots for a Cure (MFAC) to promote the annual event.

Mascots visited nearly 40 children’s hospitals around the country, including OSF HealthCare Children's Hospital of Illinois in Peoria, doing the Twist for 36 seconds with those willing and able. 36 is the number of children diagnosed every day with cancer. This year, more than 250 mascots, including Homer from the Peoria Chiefs, visited over 2,500 children.

The pediatric oncology program at OSF HealthCare Children’s Hospital of Illinois has 5,000 outpatient visits each year with more than 4,000 inpatient days in the 16-bed dedicated children’s cancer unit. The program also includes the Heller Center for Kids with Cancer which provides non-clinical support to kids with cancer and their families.

Mascots for a Cure was founded in 2014 by Derek Zinser in memory of his father who died from the disease in 2009. “My passion for mascots came from seeing their power in bringing hope, joy and love to children of all ages who are battling cancer. We believe that together, we can help fight childhood cancer, one mascot at a time!”Check out the video of Chubby Checker twisting here. Learn more about Mascots for a Cure by visiting


National Twist Day