February 10, 2014 at 4:36 AM
WEST ORANGE, NJ - Relay for Life of West Orange is holding its 2014 Kick-off Celebration on Wednesday, Feb. 26, at 7:00 p.m., in the Atrium at Codey Arena, which is located at 560 Northfield Avenue, West Orange. The Kickoff will feature free music, light refreshments, and entertainment. Those interested are asked to RSVP by Feb. 21 to: firstname.lastname@example.org or 973-232-2572. For more information or to register/donate, click here.
The public, including those affected by the disease, family, survivors and caregivers, is invited to attend and learn how to form or participate on a team. Members from Livingston are still needed to join the Relay for Life Committee, become team captains, and volunteer in several capacities. Teams can be comprised of family, friends, students, and co-workers, etc. For the event to be successful, Relay for Life is asking for an engaged community that believes it can make a difference.
About the Event
The actual Annual Relay for Life event, an overnight event that honors loved ones lost to cancer and celebrates survivors, will be held on June 13-14 at West Orange High School. It is an organized, overnight community fundraising walk where teams of people camp out around a track with members of each team taking turns walking around the track for 24 hours. Because it’s a team event, individual participants are not required to be there the entire time. Food, games and activities provide entertainment and build camaraderie.
The event begins with a Survivors Lap, in which all cancer survivors in attendance take the first lap around the track, celebrating their victory over cancer, while being cheered on by the other participants who line the track. Relay For Life events also recognize and celebrate caregivers, who give time, love, and support to their friends, family, neighbors, and coworkers facing cancer.
After dark, a Luminaria Ceremony takes place to remember people lost to cancer, honor people who have fought cancer in the past, and support those whose fight continues. Candles are lit inside of personalized bags and are placed around the Relay track as glowing tributes to those who have been affected by cancer.
There is also a Fighting Back ceremony that inspires Relay participants to take action. The Fight Back Ceremony symbolizes the emotional commitment people can make in the fight against cancer. The action taken represents what peopleare willing to do for themselves, for loved ones, and for the community to fight cancer year-round and to commit to saving lives.
History of Relay for Life
According to the Relay for Life website, in May 1985, Dr. Gordy Klatt walked and ran for 24 hours around a track in Tacoma, Washington, ultimately raising $27,000 to help the American Cancer Society fight the nation’s biggest health concern--cancer. A year later, 340 supporters joined the overnight event. Since those first steps, the Relay For Life movement has grown into a worldwide phenomenon, raising nearly $5 billion to fight cancer.