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Federal Way Relay for Life runs June 24-25 | Cancer benefit honors survivors and superheroes

Walkers in purple shirts begin Federal Way’s 2010 Relay For Life with the Survivor Lap. Purple shirts symbolize a person who has survived cancer. The 2011 event takes place June 24-25 at Saghalie Middle School in Federal Way. - Mirror file photo
Walkers in purple shirts begin Federal Way’s 2010 Relay For Life with the Survivor Lap. Purple shirts symbolize a person who has survived cancer. The 2011 event takes place June 24-25 at Saghalie Middle School in Federal Way.
— image credit: Mirror file photo

With more than 300 participants already signed up, and more than $29,000 raised, the Federal Way Relay for Life event is ready for another year. Participants will converge on Saghalie Middle School from June 24-25, walking a track overnight to benefit the American Cancer Society.

The theme for this year’s event is “Superheroes,” honoring those superheroes in everyday life who truly make a difference. Theresa Raleigh, event chair for the Federal Way event, feels 2011’s theme is a good one.

“This year’s theme has a lot more heart to it,” she said.

When the event starts at 6 p.m. June 24, the first lap will be dedicated to cancer survivors in attendance. The second lap will be dedicated to caregivers, while the third lap will honor those superheroes who are central to this year’s theme — including active or retired military, police officers, firefighters and first responders.

Relay for Life events around Puget Sound and Western Washington have posted record-breaking numbers, with the Tacoma relay raising approximately $500,000 and the Arlington relay raising more than $250,000. Raleigh said a modest goal has been set for Federal Way’s event.

“We raised just over $80,000 last year,” she said. “We want to raise $80,000 again.”

With 2011 being Raleigh’s third and final year as event chair, she hopes to see Federal Way’s event take its place among regional Relay events with the number of participants and money raised.

“Federal Way is poised for an event that size, and ready for an event that size,” Raleigh said. “We just need more community involvement to get there.”

The reason for anyone’s involvement with Relay for Life is quite simple, Raleigh said.

“The theme of Relay is the theme of life,” she said. “Cancer doesn’t discriminate by age, color or race. It doesn’t care how much money you make, it doesn’t care about how much educational background you have. It affects everyone. We’re here to help everyone regardless of any of those factors. We’re here to change lives.”

Check it out

• Check-in begins at 3 p.m. June 24 at Saghalie Middle School, 33914 19th Ave. SW, Federal Way. A luminaria lighting will take place around 9:30 p.m. The event concludes with a closing ceremony at noon June 25.

• There are a number of other themes for laps throughout the 24 hours the event will take place, ranging from a “Bubble” lap to a “Pirates” lap to a “Cowboy” lap.

• A number of awards will be given out during the event. There will be two “Survivor” awards handed out, one going to a person who has lived the longest past their cancer diagnosis. The other award will honor someone who was most recently diagnosed with cancer. Outside of those somber awards, a Great Outdoors, Sleepless in Seattle, Devil Wears Prada, Midnight Delight, Road Trip, Best Baton and Footloose award will be handed out to participants.

• For more information on the Federal Way Relay for Life event, visit www.federalwayrelay.org.

 

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