Relay for Life is less than a month away!

8 May

The scene in the track infield during the 2011 event. Click on the photo to see a 2011 photo gallery.

It seems like the whole town is gearing up to go big at the annual Relay for Life. As the date draws near, I’ve been hearing about it from the schools, the town and from readers.

You know all about this terrific fund-raising event, right?  If not, here’s a great explanation from the American Cancer Society:

The American Cancer Society Relay For Life is a life-changing event that gives everyone in communities across the globe a chance to celebrate the lives of people who have battled cancer, remember loved ones lost, and fight back against the disease. At Relay, teams of people camp out at a local high school, park, or fairground and take turns walking or running around a track or path. Each team is asked to have a representative on the track at all times during the event. Because cancer never sleeps, Relays are overnight events up to 24 hours in length.

This year’s event is scheduled from 6 pm Saturday June 1 through 6 am Sunday June 2, at the Webster Thomas High School track.  The first order of business are opening ceremonies, then a Survivors Lap, reserved for those who have fought cancer and won, or who are still doing battle.  Then everyone takes to the track and the event begins in earnest.

An enthusiastic walker from the 2011 event. Click on the photo to redirect to a 2011 gallery.

If you’ve never been to Relay for Life, you will not believe the happy carnival atmosphere that pervades the event. I attended for the first time a few years ago and was changed forever. I wrote the next day,

I attended one of the most inspirational events of my life last night. It was called the Relay For Life, and it can only be described as … well, a celebration of life….

…It wasn’t just people walking around a track. It was people skipping arm-in-arm around the track. It was people dressed in silly costumes, pushing strollers, walking backwards.  Entire families walking together, old and young alike. Friends from school and work dancing to the music being piped onto the field.  There was a band, a children’s chorus, and a magician. There were balloons and banners, flags and streamers. Everyone was smiling and laughing and enjoying the company of friends and family.

It’s yet another great example of how the Webster community comes together when there’s a need.

That even includes Webster residents who can’t make it over to the track.

On the day of the Relay, residents at The Maplewood in the village of Webster will stage a two-hour “mini relay” at the facility, beginning at 10:30 am.  Gary Sacco, The Maplewood’s Director of Recreation, explains that “The object is to keep the laps going continuously for the entire two hours. This is a nice way to warm up for the full event later in the day at Webster Thomas.” Donations will be accepted to benefit the American Cancer Society.

Walkers and volunteers who’d like to accompany the residents at the event, or who’d like to help work the mini-relay track, are welcome to attend.   Call Sacco at (585) 872-1800 x4017 or email him at GSacco@visitmaplewood.com if you’re interested.

Want to find out more? Click here for more details about the American Cancer Society’s Annual Relay for Life. Consider creating a team. Join a team. Or just come by and do a lap in memory of a loved one. And while you’re there you can buy a t-shirt to show your support.

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