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Relay for Life — building hope and support for those with cancer

Building Hope, the title for the annual Archuleta County Relay for Life, began its 2012 season with a kickoff earlier this month.

The Springs Resort donated the space (as it does for committee meetings and training classes) and Alley House catered the event. At that time, 10 teams registered to participate in the June 22 event to be held at the Pagosa Springs High School track. This year, the Relay for Life is co-hosting with the Pagosa Springs Home and Garden Show.?

Archulata County’s Relay for Life, a fund-raising tool of the American Cancer Society (ACS), raised more than $60,000 last year. Those and other ACS resources helped Archuleta County residents with cancer by providing gas cards, housing when treatment required overnight stays, counseling, information on treatment options and alternatives outside the area.

The Relay committee is actively recruiting committee members, new teams, donations for existing teams, volunteers to staff the various activities for the event and sponsors for the event. Relay will begin at 4 p.m. on the June 22 with activities for children. It will continue through the night, with team members walking to honor survivors, thank caretakers and support those still fighting the disease.?

There will be games and entertainment for children, a dinner for survivors, booths selling food and a ceremony to honor those who did not survive. Other events for the evening and through the night will include live entertainment and “challenges” for the walkers. The Lighting of Luminarias ceremony will honor those who have not survived. For the first time, the Relay will collect canned food for programs in the county, using the cans to hold the luminarias in place during the ceremony then donating them to local food banks after the event.

A Team Captain University for returning and new team captains will be held at 5:30 p.m. on April 12, and the committee will hold its monthly meeting on April 17 at 5:30 p.m. Both will be at The Springs Resort.

For further information about participating as a team captain or team member, serving on the Relay committee, the activities of the event, or to make a donation, call Susan Williams at 247-0278, Opt. 3.

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