SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ — Over the past two years, Tami Eagle Bowling has raised about $60,000 through her various fundraising efforts for metastatic breast cancer research.

Bowling, a Scotch Plains mom of two, was diagnosed with stage IV breast cancer in in 2015. With no history of breast cancer in her family, she said she was shocked to find out these results after a routine mammogram at age 41. Because the breast cancer had already spread to her liver, the disease is metastatic and incurable. The good news, she said, is that she has been fighting back and her treatment is working well. However, most metastatic patients do not have a long life expectancy. That is why she has dedicated her time and resources to funding critical metastatic research via the Breast Cancer Alliance. 

On Thursday, Nov. 16, Bowling opened her home to 145 women from the local area for a shopping fundraiser.

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“Scotch Plains and Westfield might be small towns on the New Jersey map, but these towns are filled with huge hearts,” Bowling said.

Every aspect of the event was donated.

“Blue Jasmine and Naomi McElynn of Ferris Brothers adorned the house with gorgeous pink floral centerpieces,” Bowling said. “Juice House sampled their amazing Acai bowls.  & grain offered a taste of avocado toast and a unique quinoa blend. Banfi's Centine Wine and Chandon were paired wonderfully with Finlandia Cheese. Stagehouse Tavern presented their signature spinach dip. Mara’s cafe showcased their Balsamic and Blue salad. Mazzella's sampled their famous rice balls. Whole Foods supplied fresh vegetables. Deli King of Linden donated sloppy joe wraps. The scents of Swiss Pastry Shoppe cinnamon danishes and chocolate rugelach filled the room. Not one piece of chocolate was left on the irresistible platter from Chocolate Works. ”

And the fundraising effort from that night continues. For anyone who purchases a corporate order from Chocolate Works Millburn and mentions Bowling, 10 percent of the funds will be donated back to Breast Cancer Alliance until December 31. WholesalePartySupplies.com is offering a 20 percent discount off orders $40 or more by using code PC20 until Dec. 31.

“This ladies-only holiday shopping boutique was more than just a fundraiser,” Bowling said. “It was a testament to the support a community can provide. Event guru Jessica Silverstein, EventsbyJES, coordinated all the vendors for the evening, which each donated a percentage of their sales to Breast Cancer Alliance. The map handed out at the entrance guided attendees to all vendors including Just Name It, India Hicks, Chic Boutique, Dezyne by Lysa, 4 Fashions, Miniature Moguls, doTerra, Bubble Wrap, Beauty Counter, J.Hilburn, Steeped Tea, Stella & Dot, Luckee Star, Birchhouse Candles and Just Live Activewear.”

Bowling called the night “a celebration of life, family, friendship and girl power.” Gift bags given out had her mantra on them, #MakeEachDayMeaningful, and were filled with magazines, coupons, Steeped Tea and Revlon products.

“No matter what invisible battle you might be fighting, you have the power to choose how you react to it,” Bowling said. While she still feels it is important to shield her young children from her diagnosis, she is as public as she can be to support others facing this illness.

If you would like to contribute to Bowling’s efforts for metastatic breast cancer research, click here.