RELAY FOR LIFE COMMITTEE … The Fulton County Relay for Life committee stands in-between luminarias placed for the event. Names go from left to right. Becky Dickson, Christy Williams, Jessica Double, Amanda Bird, Taylor Wachtmann, Karla Batt. (PHOTOS BY JACOB KESSLER, STAFF)
By: Jacob Kessler
The Fulton County Relay for Life committee held an event at the Fulton County Fairgrounds Friday night. The event started at 8:30 PM with names being read at 9:45 PM.
Each name read was also placed on a cup with a light inside. The names were to signify those we have lost, those who fight on, and care givers, friends, and family. Each cup was purchased for $10 as a donation.
Normally a Relay for Life event in Fulton County would entail a lap being done by survivors, games, food and vendors. 2020 was going to be the 25th anniversary of the Relay for Life in Fulton County, but it was not able to be put on due to restrictions from COVID-19.
The event this week was held at the time the event normally takes place. But due to restrictions still being in place, up until recently, the event had to be changed.
2020 was hard for most people in some way or another. The Fulton County Relay for life program was especially hit hard. Amanda Bird, who is a committee member said that “we were only able to raise around half the amount compared to normal last year”.
The committee is looking forward to the future with Covid-19 restrictions ending. Amanda explained how Road to Recovery as well as Hope Lodges had to be halted from last year. They are looking to be able to restart them with Road to Recovery looking to restart this fall.
Road to Recovery helps to give those with Cancer transportation to and from treatment. Whether they are not able to get a ride or cannot drive themselves, this program helps to make sure that they are able to get their treatment on time.
Hope Lodges helps to provide a place to stay for those who are getting treatment with a local location in Cleveland, Ohio.
“The important thing is for people to know that some of the money is used for services and programs right here in Fulton County,” Amanda said.
Some of the money is also used for programs like Hope Lodges that residents of Fulton County can take full advantage of when it restarts.
Karla Batt is a Community Development Manager from the American Cancer Society and was also at the event. “The committee has had a rough year and a half with fundraising. This year Fulton County has rallied behind these volunteers,” Karla said.
The event was open to the public and allowed guests to walk or drive down a street that had Luminaria’s placed on each side. At 9:45 the names were read online and to all that had gathered there.
At the time of reading the names, there had been 391 luminarias purchased. Some names were duplicates but any number is too high.
The committee is planning another event on October 2nd that will be closer to a more normal event. “Everything is still in the works at this time, but some things will still be different.”
“We encourage people to stay tuned for more information for the event in October and we hope people will come out and join us.” Amanda explained.
The event leadership would like to give a special thanks to the people of Fulton County for their support.
The Fulton County Relay for Life will still be fundraising all year long. If anyone is interested in donating, they can go to relayforlife.org/fultoncounty or reach out to the team on Facebook and they will get in touch.
Jacob can be reached at email@example.com
REMEMBER AND HOPE … Guests drive and walk down the road to see the luminarias lit and see the names they show. As they enter and continue, signs remind guests to Remember for those that were lost and Hope for those still fighting.
SUPPORT, HONOR, MEMORY … Each cup signifies what each cup here shows. Those we have lost, those who fight on, and caregivers, family and friends.