The public is invited to stop in for a game of bridge to raise money for research and hopefully for the cure.
The Charlottesville-based Jefferson Bridge Association is one of 150 bridge groups across North America participating in a sunrise to sunset bridge-playing event Friday called The Longest Day.
More than 600 teams all around the United States are doing all kinds of activities like biking, running, swimming, scuba diving, playing sports and quilting to help with fundraising.
Organizers say it's no coincidence this event is on the summer solstice, the longest day of sunlight during the year.
"When I first heard the term 'The Longest Day,' I didn't think so much about the summer solstice as I did the day I never found my mom," said Nan Massie, the Jefferson Bridge Association club manager. "On that day we spent the day with doctors over and over testing and procedures trying to figure out why mom had wondered out of the house at night, and was found the next day in the yard, unable to stand or get herself up," she said. "So to me the first meaning of 'The Longest Day' was what we went through that day."
Holding the event on the summer solstice not only represents how hard each day is for families when a loved one is being diagnosed with Alzheimer's, Massie said, but also the struggle every day for the Alzheimer patient.
"It's a day that doesn't seem to have an end, you realize that there doesn't seem to be any way to stop the downhill battle of dementia or Alzheimer's," she said. "The longest day for those of us who are participating in that fundraiser is one day, but if you think of the victims of Alzheimer's it's every day, and every day just goes on and on so it's a horrible thing for those people."
Event organizers say more than five million Americans have Alzheimer's, and it's the sixth-leading cause of death in the U.S. for people 65 and older.
The bridge-playing event takes place Friday at the Cavalier Inn on Emmet Street from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.