This time of year is relay time here in the western communities, and as we have done often in the past, we urge all members of the community to get involved in this worthy cause.
In April, there will be three American Cancer Society Relay for Life events here in the western communities:
• The Acreage/Loxahatchee Relay for Life will take place on Friday, April 10 from 6 p.m. until Saturday, April 11 at 6 a.m., at Acreage Community Park (6701 140th Ave North).
• The Wellington Relay for Life will take place on Saturday, April 25 starting at noon and continuing until midnight on Sunday, April 26 at Palm Beach Central High School (8499 Forest Hill Blvd.).
• The Royal Palm Beach Relay for Life will take place on Saturday, April 25 starting at 4 p.m. and continuing until Sunday, April 26 at 6 a.m. at Royal Palm Beach High School (10600 Okeechobee Blvd.).
The Relay for Life is generally an overnight community fundraising walk that celebrates survivors, honors those lost and inspires hope, all while raising money for cancer research and support.
The event began in the mid-1980s in Tacoma, Wash., when Dr. Gordy Klatt walked for 24 hours and 83 miles around Baker Stadium at the University of Puget Sound. Friends donated $25 to run or walk for 30 minutes with him, raising a total $27,000 for the local American Cancer Society office. The experience sparked a passion in Klatt, and he organized the first team relay event, then called the City of Destiny Classic 24-hour Run Against Cancer.
Today, thousands of relays are held across the United States, raising billions of dollars across three decades. The event brings out teams who raise money and then walk the track, with one person from each team walking or running around the clock.
The family-friendly event typically passes time with music and festivities, but also pays homage to those who live with cancer every day — from survivors to caregivers. It’s a special event that brings the community together, and the funds raised go to help fund research, to help cancer patients afford accommodations while in treatment, to fund programs to get patients to and from their doctors, and other services.
Fighting cancer is a noble cause, and the Relay for Life is an inspiring way to tackle such a somber issue. We encourage the community to go out and support these important local events. Even if you can’t join a team, stop by and have some food, play some games and support the teams’ efforts.
For more information, or to sign up, visit www.relayforlife.org and search for your local event.