SAUK RAPIDS -- A group of 18 local leaders and influential men are spending October wearing pink this year, to raise awareness and money for breast cancer.

The "Real Men Wear Pink" campaign kicked off Tuesday night at Urban Lodge Brewery and Restaurant in Sauk Rapids.  The men leading the charge for the fundraising range from St. Cloud Police Chief Blair Anderson, to Rox GM Mike Johnson, to Dr. Ryan Wippler of Central Diagnostic Imagining.

Since breast cancer doesn't just affect women, the goal of the "Real Men Wear Pink" campaign is to bring more awareness from the male side of the equation. Dr. Wippler says that's why the American Cancer Society brings in prominent men in the community.

"For the past three years, the American Cancer Society has sought out local leaders and influencers in the St. Cloud area. To raise not only money but awareness for breast cancer research, care and treatment, specifically targeting the fellas."

The men will all, as the campaigns name suggests, wear pink throughout the month of October as their big fundraising push. Dr. Wippler says this is to get people around town asking questions, and hopefully donating.

"If we get some upstanding gentlemen in the community to raise pink, people are going to ask them about it. And that gives our participants the in to say, well I wear pink to raise awareness and money for breast cancer."

Wippler says through campaigns like this nationally, the American Cancer Society has raised almost $1-billion since 1993. Each of the men this year has pledged to raise at least $2,500 each. So far the campaign has raised just under $8,000. They have a goal of $50,000.

If you'd like to donate to a specific candidate, or the campaign, follow the link below.