2009-06-26 / Community

Relay For Life This Weekend At Riis Park

The survivors get ready for their opening lap. The survivors get ready for their opening lap. The American Cancer Society's Relay for Life has quickly become one of the premier events on the peninsula each year, attended by more than a hundred participants who spend the night walking laps and taking part in events, all to honor those who have died of cancer or who have lived to beat the dreaded disease.

Described by a local spokesperson as a "unique celebration of life in honor and in memory of those whose lives have been touched by cancer," the two day event will be held this year at the mall at Riis Park on June 27 and June 28.

The Relay For Life involves teams of eight to fifteen people who take turns walking or running around a track all night long.

The spokesperson says that a festive atmosphere prevails as team members camp out on the surrounding grounds for the duration of the event to enjoy music, food, fun, entertainment and activities while building camaraderie with fellow teammates and participants. Money is raised through team commitment fees and an individual goal of $100 in donations secured from family, friends, companies or corporations.

A team honoring Arverne activist Sarah Colson, who died of cancer two years ago. A team honoring Arverne activist Sarah Colson, who died of cancer two years ago. Registration for the event begins on Saturday, June 27 at 5 p.m. The opening Ceremony and Survivors' Lap will begin at approximately 6 p.m.

At that time, cancer survivors are invited to take a victory lap and be cheered on by fellow participants in a true celebration of their courageous battle.

The highly-popular and moving Luminaria Ceremony will begin at approximately 10:00 p.m. At that time, a candlelight ceremony pays tribute to those who have been affected by cancer. Candles are placed in white bags filled with sand and are positioned around the track.

These Luminarias are purchased in honor of those who have survived their battle with cancer, for those that are still fighting, and in memory of those who have courageously battled this disease but lost. The Luminarias are kept burning throughout the night, representing the healing power of community and the importance of funding to find a cure.

A relay team gets together for a fun evening. A relay team gets together for a fun evening. The closing ceremony will be held on Sunday morning at 7:00 a.m.

Dinnertime at Riis Park. Dinnertime at Riis Park.

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