Father Jim Dieker, middle, watches as Legion members prepare to post the colors at the beginning of the evening July 11 at Light Park. L&T file photo/Robert Pierce
• Special to the Leader & Times
The Seward County American Cancer Society 2014 Relay For Life kicked off Thursday, July 10, at El Rancho Exotica with a meal catered by SJK Events to honor cancer survivors and their caregivers.
This was followed by Annica Slater of Tyrone, Okla., telling the story of her journey with cancer. Drew Faulkner, of Hooker, Okla., then sang the song “Annie” which he wrote in honor of Annica.
There were 48 survivors, caregivers and committee members present.
The main event was on Friday and Saturday, July 11 and 12, in Light Park. Emcee Stanley Cordova opened the event at 7 p.m. by welcoming everyone and recognizing all cancer survivors and their caregivers present, at which time those persons walked a lap around the park.
This was followed by introduction of the committee members and the team captains, followed by a lap with everyone walking. The teams then split up with one member walking the track all night. Various talent kept everyone entertained early in the evening. At 10 p.m., a very moving ceremony was conducted with the playing of the song “Every Candle Has A Name” and the reading of the names on the luminarias lining the track in honor or in memory of someone who has battled cancer.
The luminarias contained canned goods donated by participants which was then donated to several local food cupboards. At 11 p.m., Little Caesar’s brought out free pizza for everyone, and at midnight, a very entertaining Zumba contest was held between four local studios.
The rest of the night was spent walking and playing games such as a bouncy house, basketball, beach volleyball, slat races, frozen T-shirt contest, face painting and water balloon tossing.
At 5 a.m. Saturday, 10 people participated in a 5K run/walk, with Austin Pickering coming in first, Vanessa Diaz second and Sally Yates third.
At 6:30 a.m., McDonald’s provided breakfast burritos for those die hards who made it all night.
If anyone would be interested in helping plan next year’s event, please call Sunny Egley at 620-417-5070 or Mary Young at 580-778-3578.