Relay for life

Las Animas County Relay for Life is busy preparing for this year’s annual relay scheduled for Saturday, August 3, from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Central Park in Trinidad.

“The awesome thing is that we are growing,” said event organizer Kendra Doherty of Roar for Relay for Life. “And we’ve been able to help a lot more cancer patients in our county this year and Huerfano County… It’s nice to know all the work we do helps every cancer survivor and patient. That’s our goal, to have more birthdays for everyone.”

The August 3 event begins in earnest with a cancer survivor dinner at 5:30 p.m. That is followed by the “Survivor and Caregiver Lap,” portion of the relay at 6:30 p.m. The always-powerful “Luminaria” ceremony is at 9 p.m.

“We would just love for anyone and everyone to come out,” said Doherty. “If you are a cancer survivor, come out. If you are a caregiver, come out. If you have loved ones affected, come, or if you just know someone who knows someone. We have our ‘Survivor’ lap and our ‘Luminary’ lamp… It is all very powerful…”

Around the ceremonies there will be music, fun, games, activities for kids, fundraisers, food, vendors and some silliness.

Said Doherty, “We have a lot of new fun stuff we are trying this year: the human foosball game, the obstacle course and a lot of other things. This is our fourth year doing the whip cream pie contest and it just keeps growing we had 15-20 people last year and it is just a blast. We have fun stuff for the kids and for people of all ages.”

Even though this is the big event of the year for the local Relay for Life group, Doherty is sure to point out that the fight against cancer is constant.

“Yes, we have our big annual event in August, but we fight caner all year round. We do booths at different events to raise money and hold individual fundraisers, anything we can do to promote our passion and get everyone involved. Cancer is an aggressive and terrible disease and they are making strides everyday in being able to fight it. We need everyone to band together to fight this disease, because it doesn’t discriminate, it doesn’t matter the age of someone, it can attack anyone. So, we fight back for all of them.”

Funds are needed, but Relay for Life volunteers find something much more lasting taking part in events like these. “For us it’s about finding family,” said Doherty. “It’s wonderful to see all we can do and our ROAR family is a wonderful support group for anyone going through cancer. We are a big family. We call ourselves ‘family’.”

Volunteers and help are still needed for the event. For more information contact Kendra Doherty at 719-680-0693, or Lesley Abeyta-Hertzing at 719-859-2065, or Ruben Romero at 719-859-4089, or Bernice Angely at 505-401-4962.

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