My article from the May 11, 2016, issue of The Mena Star.
We live in an area where the words “you have cancer” are heard much too often. But it is nice to know there are people in Polk County doing something about it. They are participating in Relay For Life.
Relay is an overnight event designed to promote cancer awareness while raising funds to fight the disease. This year’s Relay For Life of Polk County will be held Friday, May 13th at Janssen Park in Mena.
The opening ceremony is at 6 p.m. The Relay For Life event opens with an inspirational Survivors Lap that symbolizes the steps Relay For Life volunteers are taking toward saving lives. Cancer survivors are honored as they take the first lap. The opening ceremony honors survivors and caregivers, but everyone is invited to show their support. From that time on, the object is to keep someone from each of the Relay For Life teams on the walking track at all times until the conclusion of the event.
The community is invited come out and enjoy the evening. Each Relay team will be fundraising with food for sale, games, and entertainment. All proceeds raised at the event will go to the American Cancer Society to fund cancer research. There will be live music and activities. After dark, there will be a Luminaria Ceremony honoring those who are battling cancer and remembering those we have lost to the disease. Lighted luminaria will line the track, and the names will be read.
The American Cancer Society Relay For Life is the world’s largest movement to end cancer. Around the world, Relay unites communities as they celebrate people who have battled cancer, remember loved ones lost, and fight back against this disease. Relay For Life brings together 3.5 million people each year to raise much-needed funds and awareness that enable the American Cancer Society to help people stay well, help people get well, find cures and fight back against cancer. Together with the support of the dedicated volunteers of Relay For Life of Polk County these events are making a difference.
Relay For Life has been a major community event in Polk County for the last ten years. There are fifteen teams with 200 volunteers participating in this year’s event. These hard working teams have already raised over $53,000.00 in 2016.
Nearly every person who participates in Relay For Life has been touched by cancer in some way and has a unique and personal story to tell. It’s these stories that motivate and inspire them to celebrate, remember, and fight back against cancer. Relay For Life unites our community in an effort to find cures for cancer. Join the hard working volunteers of Polk County at Relay For Life on May 13th for this awesome event.