Relay for Life event makes final preparations

Relay For Life committees and participants prepare for the 2022 event and finalize plans

Kaitlyn Burke, JagWire reporter/photographer

Since 2016, Relay for Life fundraising for cancer has been an event at school. Each year, students are led by social studies teacher Cory Wurtz in bringing to life an event that features games, food and activities with the aim of raising money for improving cancer survival and the quality of life for cancer patients and their caretakers. In recent years, COVID-19 has set back the event, but this year it is coming back.

This year, Relay for Life will be taking place on Saturday, April 23 on the track, from 6-10 p.m. This year’s theme is “game night” and will feature lots of booths with fun games and prizes to win as well as a food truck. 

Senior Maddy Williams, head of the publicity, sponsorship, fundraising, and decorations committees has been a part of Relay since her freshman year. Williams shares some behind the scenes when preparing for the event. 

“Relay is just around the corner so we have a majority of the event already planned. We are collaborating and delegating to other committee members,” Williams said. “Dates and the event schedule are finished, for the most part, we are still trying to nail down speakers and other instructors for activities.”

Wurtz has played a large role in conducting and planning the event. Wurtz and students work all year to put on this event that students and community members get to be a part of. 

“There’s a lot of planning and thought process to it, it’s a system of oversight. There’s a lot of entering data with regards to students, forms and chaperone’s. Things that happen behind the scenes trying to make this the best experience for everybody. The number one goal is raising as much money as possible,” Wurtz said. 

During COVID-19 planning the event became increasingly harder and raising the money for those events with the financial burden lots of families were facing was also difficult. 

Now stepping out of the shadow of COVID-19, Wurtz hopes to return to some normalcy. 

“The first year we raised over $50,000, and then it was like we have got to beat that. Then because of COVID-19 and the economy, people just don’t have as much to give. We still were able to raise money last year, getting to where we got was rem

arkable,” Wurtz said. “This year if we get to that mark, again, it’s great. We have a goal and we want to raise as much as possible. That’s our goal, create a good experience while raising money to support our survivors.”

Sophomore Elly VanRheen, is a part of a relay team and is on the logistics committee as well. VanRheen and her group have been preparing in excitement to promote their booth “Hungry for a Cure,” taking after the game Hungry Hippos.  

“We have been designating who’s getting what and what we want everyone to do and how we want to decorate our stand. We’ve met a few times about what supplies people need to get,” VanRheen said. 

All students are encouraged to participate in Relay. William’s shares what the benefits of joining a relay team are. 

“I think attending Relay for Life is a great way to get involved in your community. It is a night full of fun, food and activities and it all goes towards a good cause. I highly recommend joining a team for relay, it really adds to the experience,” Williams said.

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