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Relay for Life set for April 30

Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines. Organizers for the American Cancer Society’s annual Relay for Life event in Atmore are moving ahead with plans for the 2011 event.

Julie Ray, chairperson for the event, said a date has been set and plans are moving to make Relay in Atmore a successful event.

“We are planning the event for April 30, 2011,” Ray said. “The theme will be ‘Racing for the Cure,’ and should be a lot of fun.”

Ray said the event’s theme will be used by teams throughout their fundraising efforts and in campsite decorations on event day.

“Our theme this year should be a lot of fun for everyone on teams,” Ray said. “Any racing idea can be used including cars, trucks, bicycles, runner, you name it, anything to do with racing will be acceptable in keeping with our theme.”

A team captain’s meeting has also been set to allow those interested in forming a team to get information on planning.

“We will be holding our first team captain’s meeting on Sept. 16,” Ray said. “That meeting is for captains of teams who have already made a commitment for the 2011 Relay. It’s also a chance for people interested in having a team to come and see what Relay is all about. We will be happy to help new teams come up with a plan for recruiting members and how to raise funds for the American Cancer Society.”

Serving as co-chair with Ray is Gayle Johnson. Johnson has already put in some hard work creating an Atmore Relay for Life newsletter.

“I want to have a way of getting information to Relay for Life supporters,” Johnson said. “We have a lot of work to do and this will help.”

Jeanie Mann, area director with the American Cancer Society, said the 2010 event was great and said the 2011 event is already gearing up to be a success.

“I am so proud of everyone who participated in the 2010 event,” Mann said. “We got a late start and had to move the Relay indoors on very short notice and we still had a fantastic Relay.”

The 2010 goal of $50,000 was surpassed through fundraising before and after the event, Mann said.

“Overall $50,537 was raised in 2010,” Mann said. “Over $15,000 was turned in after Relay. I know a lot of people focus on the Relay monetary goal, but $50,000 is a lot of money and I know Atmore’s Relay will exceed that amount in 2011.”

Ray said the goal for the 2011 event has been set at $65,000 with a goal to have 20 teams participating. Teams already committed as well as the Relay Committee are already planning some fundraising.

“The organizing committee for the event holds their own fundraisers each year and we are already planning something special,” Ray said. “Some groups are already making plans for some fundraisers that will actually be fun for the community to get involved in this year. A lot of planning is still going on, but this should be a fun year for the event.”

Committee members for the 2011 Relay for Life include Ray and Johnson as co-chairwomen; Elaine Rogers – sponsorship; Deborah Camp – activities; Kimber Smith – team development; Cindy Lee – survivors; Donna Gilman – advertising; Sherry Digmon – media and Kitty Day – luminaria.

Anyone interested in forming a team may attend the Sept. 16 team captain’s meeting set for noon at Brooks Memorial Baptist Church.

For more information about Relay for Life, contact any committee member or visit the American Cancer Society’s Web site at www.cancer.org.