BRISTOL - The Bristol Relay for Life continues the fight against cancer and honors survivors and those lost to the disease this Friday and Saturday on Memorial Boulevard.
Derrick Lachance, organizer of the Bristol Relay for Life and a third grade teacher at West Bristol School, said the event will begin at 2 p.m. on Memorial Boulevard. Participants will be taking turns walking laps around track and camping out overnight through 8 a.m. Saturday morning.
They will be collecting donations throughout the event for the American Cancer Society.
Participants who are camping out will not sleep because “cancer never sleeps.” There will also be a survivors dinner held at 6:30 p.m., a luminary ceremony at 9:30 p.m. and a midnight movie screening.
The food for the survivors dinner was donated by The Lucky Cup Restaurant, the 99 Restaurant and Price Chopper.
“The whole night, white bags with candles inside will line the track to remember not only survivors but those who struggled with cancer and lost their lives,” said Lachance. “There will also be a slide show with all of the names of the people that we are honoring.”
Food trucks will be at the Bristol Relay for Life between 4 and 9 p.m. Friday. The Bristol Elks Club will be serving hamburgers and hot dogs and there will also be a Turkey Hut food truck and a poutine food truck. A $5 pancake breakfast will be held Saturday morning between 6 and 8 a.m.
Lachance said the event has been held for more than 10 years and is close to raising a total of $1 million to help fight cancer. Each year, the it collects between $60,000 and $80,000 for the American Cancer Society.
“There will be 18 teams participating this year for a total of about 300 people,” said Lachance. “Bristol Eastern High School has more than 100 students registered and The Barnes Group is one of our biggest sponsors. They will also have a team of about 20 people.”
Lachance encouraged people to come out and support the cause.
“Everybody knows somebody who was touched by cancer,” he said. “This is a wonderful way for people to come together, connect with each other, create a support system and help fight this terrible disease. The funds that we raise will stay local and they will make a difference in the fight.”
Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or firstname.lastname@example.org.