PLAINVILLE - Plainville Relay for Life, which has collected more than $1 million for the American Cancer Society since its 2005 inception, invites residents to join them in raising awareness and funds June 3 and 4 at Norton Park.
Hundreds of people will gather at Norton Park for opening ceremonies at 11 a.m. June 3. There will then be another ceremony dedicated to caregivers and survivors at 2 p.m. along with a catered luncheon, a “fight back” ceremony at 4:15 p.m. and a remembrance ceremony at 9 p.m. during which time guests will light torches and luminaries around the park in memory of loved ones who died from cancer. Between these events, teams will take turns walking in circles around the park. Closing ceremonies will be held at 9:30 p.m. June 4.
“Cancer never sleeps, so teams will take turns walking for 24 hours,” said Penny Ripa, a team captain, who said that she lost her mom to cancer in 1982 when she was just a teenager.
Each team will also be doing their own individual fundraising. Ripa, who was born in Plainville and now lives in Terryville, will be at Adams IGA at 201 Main St. in Terryville holding bake sales and raffles May 18, 19, 22, 27 and 28 starting at 10 a.m.
Ripa said that Plainville, despite being a small town, has been “very supportive.”
“We usually see about 600 participants,” she said. “Some people register as an individual and other teams have as many as 60 people. So far, we have more than 400 people signed up this year, including 85 survivors and 135 caregivers.”
Susan Root, relay chair, stated that “It is a family-like atmosphere with people embracing and showing their support for each other.”
In addition to the ceremonies and the walks, the event will include food and a lemonade truck, a DJ and live musical performances, raffles with gift cards to local businesses and a children’s carnival with a bounce house, face painting, “Band of Heroes” dressed as costumed superheroes and Connecticut Princess Parties. Giano noted that the band “The Bottom Line” will be performing at the event for the sixth year.
Additionally, local and area businesses have supported the event with more than $30,000 in donations this year. This amount is a $5,000 increase from last year.
For more information, or to register for the relay, visit relayforlife.org/plainvillect.
To become a business sponsor, contact Giano at 860-637-2959 or email her at email@example.com.
Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or firstname.lastname@example.org.