Jun 5, 2009

Howard County's Relay For Life, June 5 and 6

Howard County's Relay For Life, a free, fun-filled overnight event designed to celebrate cancer survivorship and raise money for the American Cancer Society, will be held June 5 and 6 at Hammond High School in Columbia. Everyone is welcome.

Opening ceremonies start at 6:30 p.m. June 5. Dick Story, CEO of Howard County's Economic Development Authority, will emcee the event for the eighth time. The Survivors' Lap will follow opening ceremonies. During this lap, survivors walk the track cheered by family and friends. A Silent Auction will be held 6:30 to 10:30 p.m. June 5. High bidders will be announced at 11 p.m. A Luminary Ceremony will begin at dusk. Luminaria are glowing bags that appear to be paper sacks filled with sand and candles, but every bag represents a life that battled cancer. During the solemn ceremony in which bagpipers play, a moment of silence is held, and a poem is read, participants remember those lost to cancer and support people who are still fighting the disease. A reflection garden will be available for participants who want to remember their loved one's cancer experience or life. Children 14 and under can participate in the Kids' Walk.

Registration starts at 6 p.m. June 5 and the walk will be held 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. June 5. During that time, children will walk around the track and enjoy activities designed for them. With a $10 donation, children will get a T-Shirt. Participants must complete a registration form that is available at www.howardrfl.com. The DJ, GoodKnight Entertainment, will be on hand throughout the night. There will be music, movies, a cake walk, scavenger hunt, line dancing, and other entertainment into the wee hours. Closing ceremonies will start at 6:30 a.m. June 6.

Teams raise money before and at the event by asking for donations and holding fundraisers. During the event, teams camp out and take turns walking around a track, with each team trying to keep at least one member on the track throughout the night. A Survivors' Reception in Hammond High's cafeteria at 5 p.m. on June 5 is also part of Relay, but is open only to cancer survivors and their guests. Registration before the reception is requested. Register on the website, www.howardrfl.com. Last year's Howard County Relay raised $266,000. For more information, call Jason Copley at 410-781-4316, visit the website, www.howardrfl.com or e-mail hcrelay@hotmail.com.

Location: Hammond High School, Columbia, MD

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