Relay for Life to benefit American Cancer Society

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By Natasha LaFayette



Over 20 teams have organized to raise money for the annual Relay for Life event to benefit the American Cancer Society (ACS.)

The Relay event will take place on May 1 starting around 6 p.m. and continuing through the night. The fund raising goal for this year is $70,000; $5,000 more than last year.

“Teams can raise money before the relay, during the relay or both,” said Relay Survivor Chair Traci Dower.

Co-chairs for this year’s event are Cancer survivors Tracy Powers and Alissa Dower. The all night Relay event will feature booths from all teams with food and games. A large stage will be the center of attraction where musicians and performers will provide entertainment throughout the evening.

“It is perfect for a family night so come hungry,” said Dower.

The evening will start as Cancer survivors walk around the track at the Campbell County High School football field. After the survivors complete a lap around the track the individual teams will walk, holding banners with the team names.

“We are very excited about the interest and support we are receiving,” said Powers. “Even in tough economic times, Cancer still greatly affects many lives and still needs to be supported.”

Dower said there is still time for teams to join Relay. She hopes to have at least 25 teams at the event.

At dusk, the luminary section of the event will take place. Candles honoring Cancer survivors or in memory of a person lost to cancer will be placed around the track, displaying the abundance of lives effected by the disease.

Luminaries can be purchased through any team taking part in the Relay event to honor or remember a person with cancer.

Many fundraising events are planned prior to the event in May.

Beginning March 7, First Volunteer Bank and the Gilded Gown will present a prom and bridal show at Caryville Elementary School.

Relay events include the LaFollette Middle School Fashion Show on April 2 and the Roane State Golf Tournament on April 24. The LaFollette Press will also be hosting its annual fish fry on April 24 at the Pro Angler Restaurant.

A survivor desert party will be held on April 21, at Roane State. Dower said the party is simply to honor the survivors and provide a place for all of them to network and meet each other. Dower, along with survivor sponsor Ayers Auction and Real Estate, encourages any survivors to contact her at 562-4941 or by email at survivor@ayersauctionrealty.com.

“Cancer survivor’s get special recognition at Relay and take a lap around the track with survivors only,” said Dower.

The Relay event committee of about nine people is working to coordinate an event with a carnival like atmosphere. Though the committee is overwhelmed with the support provided by the community, they are continuing to search out additional performers and musicians to keep the energy going all night.

“We are still looking for entertainment for the all night event,” said Dower.