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Published February 08, 2013, 08:19 PM

Sanford's Roger Maris Cancer Center provides healing through art

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) -- A new program at Sanford's Roger Maris Cancer Center is turning the "sometimes" dark and dreary days of chemotherapy, into rainbow reds and summer sun.

By: Kevin Wallevand, WDAY

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) -- A new program at Sanford's Roger Maris Cancer Center is turning the "sometimes" dark and dreary days of chemotherapy, into rainbow reds and summer sun.

As part of a nation wide grant project, Sanford's Embrace Cancer Survivorship Program hired an Artist in Residence. Heather Zinger is helping bring color and laughter to chemo infusion rooms.

"Sure a nice break in my life."

It would be easy for Haily Peterson to be upset with the world. A beautiful 22 year old college student at NDSU, suddenly battling breast cancer, going through chemo at Roger Maris.

But today, a visitor. Art. Really. Heather Zinger is Sanford's Artist in Residence here at Roger Maris. A cartful of paint and puddy, glitter and gold, crepe paper and crayons.

"Some just pour it."

Heather Zinger is just what the doctor ordered. Nothing heavy or forced. Patients can take art or leave it. Some paint, some just choose to chat with Heather.

Heather: "I need to have them do something with their hands. So that they can relax while we talking and so they are making things and have great conversations because the pressure to perform interact was off."

A kind of therapy here at Roger Maris that just seems to happen.

Hailey Peterson/Finishing Chemo for breast cancer: "Being able to do it during chemo is nice because art is calming and meditative."

For Haily Peterson, who is now in the homestretch of her chemo, it is something she said she will actually miss once she is done. It makes the experience more enjoyable because i can do something that i enjoy.

"The colors are really distracting and colors are emotional so it draws people in different ways."

Those diagnosed rely on healing hands, medicine and prayer. Add art to the list. A little glue in the fingers and some wild imagination, doesn't hurt either.

There are 16-other Artists who are part of this project, across America.

For more, go to wday.com and click on the easy link tab.

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