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University of Minnesota Foundation
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Warm heads, warm hearts

(Photo: Paul Weaver)

The young cancer patients at University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s Hospital who lose their hair after chemotherapy now have a stylish way to keep their heads warm. Thanks to the organization Love Your Melon, more than 800 cozy winter hats and baseball caps have been given to children at Amplatz.

Love Your Melon makes and sells hats and caps under a “buy one, give one” setup. You buy one; they give one to a child being treated for cancer. The organization also created a fund to provide special experiences like helicopter rides to patients and their families. And it’s all in the spirit of doing good.

Love Your Melon grew out of a University of St. Thomas classroom in 2011 when Zachary Quinn’s assignment to “start a business” turned into an undoubtedly fulfilling opportunity.

“My group decided that we needed to do something that made a difference,” Quinn says.

Amplatz Children’s Hospital was the first to open its doors to Love Your Melon and its hats. “We didn’t know exactly why we were doing it until the first time we went in Amplatz,” says Quinn. “It was remarkable to see the families and make them smile.”

Through the tireless efforts of Quinn and business partner Brian Keller, Love Your Melon has hand-delivered 1,700 hats to children’s hospitals around the country.

“It’s not just fun,” Quinn explains. “It’s necessary for these kids. It’s centered around the fun aspect, but it’s therapeutic and means so much to them.”

Buy a hat or learn more about the organization at

- Grace Birnstengel

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