Organizers of the 2012 Orangetown Relay for Life met Monday at Pearl River Library.
The primary focus is on recruiting teams for the annual event, which is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. Friday, June 15 and continue through 7 a.m. Saturday, June 16 on the Central Avenue Field in Pearl River. The event currently has 12 teams and 58 individual participants registered.
The Relay for Life raises funds for the American Cancer Society and honors those whose lives have been touched by cancer. The American Cancer Society encourages teams to have somebody walking the track from the beginning of the event to the end, though that is not mandatory.
Jennifer Muir, American Cancer Society Director of Special Events for the Hudson Valley Region, explained that the overnight event is meant to symbolize what a cancer patient goes through, from the darkness of the diagnoses to the dawn of a new day representing life after the person finds out that he or she has cancer.
"It is worth it to tough it for one night," Muir said. "A cancer patient does it every day."
Cancer survivors are guests of honor at the Relay for Life, which begins with a Survivor's Lap.
In addition to teams raising money to walk in the event, individuals can purchase Luminaria for $10 each. The white bags each represent a person who has had a cancer, a survivor or one who passed away. They can be purchased the day of the event or through the Relay for Life website. The Luminaria are lined up around the track and lit as night falls.
Groups and businesses can also purchase decorative footprints for $1 each.
Details of the event are coming together. Chairperson Joan Bourke said that Roddy Harrington will provide entertainment. She added that they are currently collecting donated raffle items. Those interested should contact Bourke at email@example.com.
Rockland Kettle Corn will also be there and there are normally activities set up on the infield for most of the evening.
The Ancient Order of Hibernians will provide the food for the event, including setting up a tent for cancer survivors.
The Hibernians also help with security, along with the Orangetown Police Department and Rockland County Sheriff's Department. Only participants will be allowed onto the Central Avenue Field after 11 p.m. June 15 to help provide a secure environment for those who stay overnight.
For more information or to register for this year's relay, go to www.relayforlife.org/orangetownny.
Patch will be telling the stories of participants in the Orangetown Relay for Life. We want to hear yours. To share the story of how cancer touched your life or why you are taking part in the Relay for Life, email Pearl River Patch editor Ryan Buncher at firstname.lastname@example.org. We want to share your words, with pictures whenever possible. These stories can provide hope and illustrate the importance of the fight against cancer.