Connect for a cure at Relay for Life of Ponte Vedra

By Angela Higginbotham
angela@floridanewsline.com

Relay for Life of Ponte Vedra will once again merge with Relay for Life of North St. Johns County for their 2018 event. The annual fundraiser will be held on Saturday, April 14, 2018 from 12 p.m. – 10 p.m., at Bartram Trail High School. Ponte Vedra residents and all surrounding areas are invited to join in on this much anticipated event. Entrance is free and the family orientated day will include ceremonies to honor and remember the courageous and strong loved ones who have faced cancer. Live entertainment, games and a variety of food will be on hand.

Founded in 1986, Relay For Life is the signature fundraiser for the American Cancer Society. Relay is staffed and coordinated by volunteers in thousands of communities and 27 countries across the world. The mission of Relay for Life is to honor cancer survivors of all ages. These events bring communities together to remember loved ones lost, honor survivors of all cancers and raise donations to help the American Cancer Society make a global impact on cancer. Through donations, Relay for Life events have helped thousands with life saving cancer research studies, crucial patient care programs and education and prevention initiatives.

Cancer survivors represent hope and prove that cancer can be defeated. The Relay for Life opening ceremony to honor cancer survivors will begin at 12 p.m. Directly following the ceremony, survivors will kick off the relay by walking the first lap around the track. Emotions will be high as survivors will be cheered on by their supportive loved ones, caregivers, and all relay participants. A survivor luncheon with bingo will begin at 1:30 p.m. Caregivers are welcome to join the survivors for lunch. Luminaria bags will be lite at dusk to honor and remember loved ones who fought cancer so bravely.

“At least 40 teams with 10 – 20 people per team are set to participate in the relay,” said event lead, Becky Kimball. “Relay teams will hold individual fundraisers throughout the day by selling crafts and food. All proceeds will benefit the American Cancer Society and our goal is $92,000 this year.”

Entertainment will include a live performance from the Julington Creek Elementary third – fifth grade chorus, local band Wingfield, Zumba, St. Augustine belly dancers, Pine Forest Elementary School of the Arts, and a talent show.

Prior to the event, a talented team is making handmade shawls to keep loved ones warm while going through chemo. Shawls are being made by Mary Crowley. Crowley can be contacted at (904) 982-1427 if you are interested in having a shawl made. A $50 donation is asked in return to benefit the American Cancer Society.

Visit www.relayforlife.org/nstjfl for additional information, to register as a survivor, participant and/or team. Volunteers are desperately needed and students are welcome. Contact the committee at RFL.northsaintjohnscounty@gmail.com for volunteer information.

Photo courtesy Kim Aslan

Festivities from previous Relays for Life.