Relay moved to church

Published 8:14 am Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Due to the threat of inclement weather Friday, the Atmore Relay for Life has been moved from Heritage Park to Brooks Memorial Baptist Church.

Megan Robinson, community manager for Relay For Life, said that the Survivors’ Dinner will be held at 6 p.m. at the church’s fellowship hall, located at 904 McRae St. in Atmore.

Other activities will either be held outdoors in the church parking lot, or inside the fellowship hall.
“It all really depends on the weather,” she said. “We still want to do some kind of outside relay, but I don’t want to make the survivors walk around the parking lot if it’s raining very hard.”

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Last year’s Relay was held in Tom Byrne Park, but this year the decision was made to move it to Heritage Park. However, the threat of rain Friday night is so high, that all activities have been moved to Brooks Memorial Baptist Church.

Robinson said that there is no ending time for the Relay, but she expects everything will likely finish up around 9:30 p.m. or 10 p.m.

“We still plan to have luminaria candle bags for sale, and hopefully the weather will be nice enough that we can release some outside,” she said. “I know a few of the teams are planning to have items to sell for their fund raisers, as well.”

Four teams have currently signed up to participate in this year’s Relay — Walmart, Walgreen’s, United Bank and Atmore Community Hospital.

“But anyone is more than welcome to come out and support the cancer survivors, and also learn whatever they can about Relay and the American Cancer Society,” Robinson said.

Relay for Life is one of the largest fund raisers in the United States. Communities join together to raise funds for the American Cancer Society (ACS), which uses that money for cancer research and patient needs. To date, more than $5 billion has been raised through Relay events.

Robinson said that she understood some citizens may not participate because the money raised “doesn’t stay in the community.” However, she noted that all people are touched by cancer in some way, and many Atmore citizens have been aided by ACS programs.

“We have a Hope Lodge [which provides free lodging to cancer patients who have to travel out of town for treatment] in Birmingham, and I know that there are people in Atmore who have stayed at that lodge, or have gotten wigs and other items through ACS programs,” she said. “If you don’t actually physically see the money coming back to your community, I can understand the concern. But I can tell you that ACS is using it wisely, and it’s benefiting people in Atmore.”