ELIZABETHTOWN —The track and football field at Elizabethtown Middle SChool hosted plenty of food, fun, walking and entertainment for a worthy cause on Friday and Saturday — all to benefit the Bladen County Relay For Life.
Things kicked off at 11 a.m. Friday with teams starting to set up and decorate their campsites. Even a brief rain shower on Friday afternoon couldn’t dampen spirits of those who took part.
Sondra Blanks of the Carvers Creek team — which consists of Vera Graham, Blanks, Ruby Jones and Jean Lloyd — said, “You know cancer hasn’t affected any of the tem members, but our families have been affected. We’re fighting for a cure.”
Yvette Ross, who is a member of Anderson’s Angels team, said of Relay, “It is absolutely wonderful.”
She added she has lost two grandparents to cancer and several aunts who have passed away from cancer. She added that is why her team is part of Relay.
Michelle Fisher, who is serving in her last year as chairman, said, “We did great considering we had less teams and less participants than last year.”
As of Monday morning, Fisher said they had raised “just over $100,000” and with donations still coming in she is confident they will make this year’s goal of $109,000. She said about 38 teams took part in the event and there were about 600 registered participants.
One highlight of the event was when Cody Clark arrived and led the kids’ lap.
“We had invited him to come and lead our kids’ walk lap. We weren’t sure he was going to be able to do it. I got a text that morning that he was coming,” said Fisher. “He did help carry the banner and lead the lap. It was emotional.”
Also assisting with children’s activities was the Super Clover 4-H Club. fisher said they are lead by Kim Sprouse and they volunteered two days ahead of Relay to help with the kids’ lap and children’s activities.
“They did an awesome job,” said Fisher of the group.
Also, Haley Hall sang the national anthem and Summer Cain sang during the luminary lighting ceremony.
“Dublin Primary School sponsored the HOPE luminary on the bleachers,” said Fisher.
Fisher said this year’s Relay for Life event is bittersweet as it is her last one as event chairwoman as she has moved on to accept a new position working with the American Cancer Society.
Jessica Inman and Mandi Padrick will serve as event co-chairs for the 2015 Relay for Life event and Fisher said they are already discussing ideas for next year’s event.