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Old Gold & Black

Old Gold & Black

Scott Kull: The new Director of Athletics
Abigail Taylor, Contributing Writer • April 16, 2024

Annual Relay for Life event set for April 16

Relay+for+Life+celebrates+cancer+survivors+while+funding+research+to+beat+cancer+for+good%2C+saving+more+lives+in+the+process.+All+Wofford+students+are+invited+and+encouraged+to+join+this+event.
Relay for Life celebrates cancer survivors while funding research to beat cancer for good, saving more lives in the process. All Wofford students are invited and encouraged to join this event.

SETUDENT ORGANIZERS HOPE TO “CELEBRATE. REMEMBER. FIGHT BACK.”—

Spring semester holds many traditions for the Wofford community, including some newer traditions among the old. This is especially true for the annual Relay for Life event, known affectionately as “Relay” by some, which has been a Wofford tradition for about five years.

Students, faculty and community members will spend hours walking around the Horseshoe behind Old Main, and the air will be filled with music and the smells of food in a festival-like atmosphere. Why? The event raises money for the American Cancer Society (ACS), says Lauren Crawford ’17.

“ACS funds millions of dollars for cancer research, and Relay for Life contributes a huge portion of that,” she says. Crawford is one of three sophomore students who are co-chairs for the event, planning and organizing this year’s Relay. Crawford, Rebecca McGregor and Annie McDermott have already started holding planning meetings, working with college staff and coordinating teams, and they are now inviting the Wofford community to get involved.

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The event will be held April 16 from 5 – 11 p.m. behind Old Main, and for six hours, each team will have at least one member walking on the track to reflect one of Relay for Life’s slogans: “Cancer Never Sleeps.” At larger events, Crawford explains, this slogan makes more sense because the Relay is held overnight. Nevertheless, the event seeks to make a powerful difference in the fight against cancer through various outlets, says McGregor. Participants form or join teams that raise money prior to the Relay by sending emails to friends and family and asking for personal donations, but teams also raise money at the event.

Teams continue their fundraising efforts by creating booths with a subtheme that corresponds to that year’s bigger theme, says McGregor. Last year, for example, the theme was movies and each team was a different movie.

“Booths can sell food, host crafts or games – anything that’s related to the theme and raises money,” says McGregor.

“Being part of a team is one of the coolest parts of Relay,” says Crawford. “You get to fundraise to save lives, and you get to hang out with others both inside and outside of your organization. There will be some competitions among the teams too, so it’s a lot of fun to be a part of a strong team.”

Relay will also feature a survivor/caretakers lap, a survivor testimony, a silent lap in which luminaries are lit in remembrance, a “Jail and Bail” game in which participants are “jailed” until enough money is raised to break him or her out and other fun, new competitions, which have yet to be finalized, says Crawford. The event raised about $9,000 last year and the goal this year is to reach $10,000.

“The best way for anyone to become part of the event is joining a team,” says Crawford. “One of the most important parts of Relay for Life is the fundraising, so the more participants we have and the more money we raise, the better.”

Anyone can join a team by Googling “Wofford Relay for Life” to see a list of existing teams, says McGregor.

“If your organization is not [listed] there or if you are a leader of a Wofford organization, then you are an excellent candidate to create a team. To create a team, start at the Wofford Relay for Life event on the Relay website (relayforlife.org) and create a team from there.”

There is no minimum or maximum team size.

“If you have an organization or just a group of people who want to help fight cancer, you should definitely start a team,” says Crawford.

Individuals may also sign up for the Wofford Relay event without joining a team.

“If you’re really interested in Relay for Life, come to one of our planning meetings. They’ll be held every other Monday starting March 2. We’d love for anyone who feels passionate about Relay to join us,” says Crawford.

These planning meetings will be publicized in the Daily Announcement emails.

“Relay for Life is a great opportunity to truly make a difference in a lot of lives. It’s easy, it’s fun and you are actually saving lives through your contribution,” says Crawford. “If you’ve never heard of Relay for Life or you just want to learn more, contact any of the event co-chairs; we’d love to tell you more.”

For more information, please email [email protected].

—Sarah Madden

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