WEST ORANGE, NJ — The West Orange division of the worldwide cancer fundraiser Relay for Life hosted its Kickoff Party at Codey Arena on Thursday. Although no formal relays took place at the arena that night, the event provided team members and team captains with a boost of energy for the upcoming fundraiser.

The 2017 Relay for Life of West Orange will take place on May 19 at 6 p.m. at West Orange High School and conclude the following day. Participants and volunteers from the township will come together to remember those they lost to cancer, take action to raise money, save lives and celebrate those who have beaten the disease.

“When we celebrate and we remember, we remember who we are fighting for. Our goal is to save lives, celebrate lives, and end cancer globally,” said Alex Baron, chair of the event. “No other private company in the country gives more to this cause than Relay for Life.”

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Relay for Life stands as the largest fundraiser in world history, raising more than $5 billion since its founding in 1986. The West Orange division of Relay for Life raised $47,000 in 2016 alone.

Teams consist of approximately 10-15 members, and each member has a donation quota of $100. Moneys raised by the American Cancer Society goes toward research, education, advocacy and patient and family services

“Right now, we have 19 teams and counting,” said committee member Jessica Gaeta, who organizes the relays. “The main thing is getting people to come, and spread the word to get them to come.”

Relay for Life teams camp out overnight and take turns walking around the high school track.

“Because cancer never sleeps, each team is asked to have a least one participant on the track at all times,” The Facebook page states.

In years past, the event has included musical performances, a Luminaria Ceremony, a Kids Corner, and themed laps such as Limbo Lap and a Mystery Lap.

Teams can register for the event at www.relayforlife.org/westorangeNJ. For more information about these events, follow Relay for Life West Orange on Facebook, Twitter: @westorangerfl and Instagram: @westorangerfl.

By hosting the kickoff event in January, the committee hopes this year’s event will be the most successful one yet.