Volunteers get ready for annual Relay For Life


WEST BRANCH –– Volunteers, survivors, caregivers and loved ones will gather Saturday, July 15, in Irons Park to raise funds and awareness for the annual Relay for Life.

For the third year in a row, the event will last 12 hours, instead of 24 hours as it did prior to 2015. It begins at 11 a.m. and will conclude at 11 p.m.

A parade will begin at 10:30 a.m. at the Silver Lining in West Branch to kick off Relay. Event organizer Mary Bell said she is hoping attendance will be even better than last year.

“We are hoping to continue growing,” she said. “The last few years we have been increasing steadily.”

Relay For Life of Ogemaw County will host a special ceremony and luncheon for all cancer survivors and their caregivers beginning at noon. New to Relay this year will be supplies for survivors to use to make signs to honor their caregivers and special laps for survivors and caregivers will take place.

A balloon release will take place during the survivor ceremony using environmentally-friendly balloons, Bell said.

The event is free to attend, but each team will have fundraisers taking place at their tents. Bell said attendees must register upon arrival and survivors will receive a free T-shirt when they register.

A Luminaria ceremony will take place during the event, as well as the Little Miss Relay pageant. The Little Miss who raises the most money before the event will be crowned Little Miss Relay. Bell said the pageant usually gets anywhere from 3-6 participants, depending on the year.

The fundraising goal for the 2017 Relay For Life was $45,000.

There will also be a bounce house, dunk tank, Lularoe sale, bake sales and other activities for children and adults to participate in.

“I think it’s important for youth to be involved and see the impact that we have on survivors,” Bell said.

For more information, contact Bell at 989-709-6795 or at mbell@teamhodges.com or contact Trisha Jackson at trisha.jackson@cancer.org or 989-821-1326.


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