Dorchester Relay for Life marks 20 years in May

Members of the “20 Years...#Purple Strong” planning committee for the 2016 Dorchester Relay For Life are shown on a windy April day at the Cambridge-South Dorchester High School parking lot where the event will be held. Back, from left, Karol Redline, Nancy Potter, Dawn Cook, Gene Skinner, Linda Horseman and Patricia Banks. Front, from left Vickie Bramble, Phyllis Weber, chairperson Gail Skinner and Jennifer Fleming.

CAMBRIDGE — Dorchester County’s Relay for Life, with a theme of “20 Years … #Purple Strong,” will be held May 20. The local organization has raised nearly $3 million since its inception in 1996.

The annual event will be held at the Cambridge-South Dorchester High School parking lot, along the Cambridge bypass, from 6 p.m. to midnight.

“All of those who have participated over the years are so proud of this milestone. Dorchester’s Relay fFor Life has raised millions in the fight against cancer and that fight is not yet over,” said Gail Skinner, chairman of the Relay for Life committee. “The funds raised truly make a difference — just ask one of the nearly 14 million cancer survivors who will celebrate another birthday this year.”

Funds raised are used for such programs as Road to Recovery.

“Cancer patients frequently cite transportation to and from treatment as one of their most critical needs,” Skinner said, “and the American Cancer Society Road to Recovery program matches cancer patients with specially trained volunteer drivers.”

Cancer survivors, caregivers and members of the community are invited to the event, where 24 teams will be walking the track to emphasize the importance of the fight against this disease.

Survivors and caregivers will be recognized at a reception and lead the first lap of the Relay. Survivor registration will begin at 4 p.m. in the high school cafeteria, with the reception from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m.

Relay for Life also recognizes and celebrates caregivers, who give time, love, and support to their friends, family, neighbors and co-workers facing cancer.

The Luminaria Ceremony takes place at about 8:15 p.m., to remember people who have been lost to cancer, honor people who have fought cancer in the past and to support those whose fight continues. Candles are lit inside of personalized bags and placed around the track as glowing tributes to those who have been affected by cancer, and will shine throughout the night.

Entertainment, including a DJ and live bands, food and fun will continue until midnight, as will a silent auction at the site. A special anniversary slideshow featuring highlights of the past 20 years will be shown.

Cancer survivors should contact Chris Foxwell to register at 443-521-4517. Anyone wishing to purchase a luminaria for $5 should call Vickie Bramble at 410-228-6302. For information on Relay, contact Gail Skinner at 410-330-1145 or gwskinner@com, or visit www.relay

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