March 1, 2013
Relay for Life will be held for the first time on the Shawnee State University Alumni Green on Friday, April 19, beginning at 6 p.m. The relay will continue until 6 a.m. Saturday morning. Until then, student organizations are hard at work forming teams and fundraising.
Conceived by the American Cancer Society, Relay for Life is an organized, overnight community fundraising walk that is used all around the U.S. to raise money for the global leader in cancer research. Fundraising teams spend the whole night camped out, taking turns running and walking around the track.
In addition, speakers, food vendors, rides and live music, including local favorite Third Degree Burden, will provide entertainment for both participants and spectators.
The event is being brought to the university and Portsmouth for the first time by student group Collegians against Cancer. Headed by Andrea Dryden and Christina Wagner, the group's online chair and publicity chair Steven Sabo says that they have high hopes for the upcoming event.
"We're working towards a $15,000 fundraising goal and at least 25 teams," he said. "Colleges smaller than us have reached even bigger goals, but this is only our first year."
Shawnee's 15 teams have raised around $1,800 and Sabo is eager to get the community and even more students involved.
The evening itself will consist of several activities, including a Survivors Lap where all cancer survivors at the event take the first lap around the track. Candles will be lit inside personalized bags and are placed around the track as tributes to those who've been affected by cancer at the Luminaria Ceremony and the climactic Fight Back Ceremony will be held symbolizing the emotional commitment to continue the fight against cancer.
"We're also having a hog roast in honor of all cancer survivors," Sabo said.
The Collegians against Cancer, among other clubs who are helping them raise money, are looking for sponsors for the event.
For more information, visit the event's Facebook page at www.facebook.com/ssurelay or contact event co-chair Andrea Dryden at firstname.lastname@example.org. Team captain meetings are every Tuesday night at 9 p.m. in Jazzman's Café in the University Center at SSU.