Walk gives hope to cure for cancer
Cancer survivors, family members and volunteers will converge at the Park Rapids Area High School track Friday, June 15 for the 13th annual Hubbard County American Cancer Society Relay for Life. This year's theme is "We are here. We can help."...
Cancer survivors, family members and volunteers will converge at the Park Rapids Area High School track Friday, June 15 for the 13th annual Hubbard County American Cancer Society Relay for Life. This year's theme is "We are here. We can help."
From 1 p.m. to 1 a.m., more than 30 teams will pace the track in an effort to raise money for cancer research. Teams consist of eight people or more and are expected to raise at least $100 per team member before the walk by asking for donations and selling luminaries for $5 each.
At the Relay for Life, the luminary bags lining the track will be lit as a symbol of hope for those currently struggling with cancer and in remembrance of those who have lost the battle. Luminary bags can be purchased from any Relay for Life team member, at the relay or by calling Cathy Hensel, publicity chair, at 573-2284.
At 8 p.m. everyone is welcome to a special ceremony introducing participating teams and cancer survivors. At that time, the luminaries will be lit and the survivors will take a special walk around the track. Brian Solum of Bemidji will provide bagpipe music and will close the ceremony with a rendition of "Amazing Grace." About 100 cancer survivors usually participate in the Relay for Life; more than 50 are already registered for this year's event. Cancer survivors interested in joining the march are asked to call Linda Pihlaja at 573-3568.
During the ceremony, a "HOPE" sign will be lit. The sign holds 45 luminaries, sold for $25 apiece. People who purchase those special luminaries will be invited to light them personally. To purchase a Hope luminary, call Rita Hocking at 732-4537.
Teams also will have booths lining the track, selling snacks and items to raise even more funds for the American Cancer Society. Hungry walkers and observers can purchase tacos, hot dogs, brats, bars, water, soda, French fries from RDO, pork sandwiches sold by the Park Rapids Pork Producers and other treats. Teams also offer games for children and family activities. Mike Torkelson from Duluth serves as DJ, providing music.
Last year, the Hubbard County Relay for Life raised about $60,000 for the American Cancer Society. This year, organizers hope to raise $75,000 through private donations and corporate sponsorships.
Whether you've been affected by cancer or just want to help the fight, Hensel urges everyone to check out this year's Relay for Life.
You don't have to be on a team to participate, come out enjoy a fun evening, walk the track, visit with friends, enjoy the carnival-like atmosphere, play a few games, eat some food and watch the survivor lap and the luminary lighting ceremony.
For more information call Pat Sullivan, event chair, at 732-0360, or to form a team, call Kathy Ahrens at 732-9424.