Relay for Life 2009
Thank you to everyone who donated this year to my Relay for Life team! We had two team members go AWOL, so we ended up with three official team members– Ryan, my co-worker ZJ and myself. Between the three of us we held our own with fundraising.
Team Dollar Total – $975*
Even though our team only had three members, I venture to claim that we logged more miles than any other team. My walking efforts started at 10 PM after the Luminary Service and ended 21 miles later at 6:20 AM. Even though Ryan Somma was charged with running to Farm Fresh and getting everyone snacks, he jogged a number of laps to catch up and squeezed in 20 miles. ZJ’s final total was around 15 miles at least two of which he ran. And when he wasn’t walking–ZJ was playing football and basketball with the neighborhood kids. Speaking of neighborhood kids, eleven year old Jacal walked around 6 miles.
Team Mileage Total – 62 miles with Jacal, 56 without.
The Luminary Service was different than what I was used to. After the normal presentation, all the names on the luminaries were read. All of them. At first I wasn’t too thrilled with the notion. There were a great deal of luminaries and I was anxious to start accruing my miles. But in the end, I turned to like the name reading. It really pounded home just how extensive cancer’s reach is. It revealed patterns in families. They would hit an uncommon last name and there would be a series of names and you would realize– here was an entire family affected. Finally, listening to all the names exposed you to luminaries you may not have noticed. Someone this year did a luminary for Carl Sagan. Even walking 84 laps around that track, I may not have seen it unless I knew it was there.
The on-site fundraising was superb! Some teams capitalized on the special laps. The DJ would announce the “bubble lap” and then there just so happened to be a team selling bubbles if you needed some. One team took advantage of the weather. When it started raining, they surfaced selling ponchos. Most teams sold food. I was particularly fond of the 4 AM breakfast biscuits and the freshly popped popcorn all night long.
My favorite fundraiser was jewelry! For $3, you could make a lap necklace. You were given a string and every time you did a lap on the track, you got to take a bead. Ryan and I did so many laps, our necklaces were no longer necklaces. They wouldn’t fit over our heads anymore, so we carried them instead.
As I mentioned in the Weekly Winners, three of the neighborhood kids (Ages 15, 13, and 11) joined us.They participated in many of the events throughout the evening– the greasy watermelon contest, the wet T-shirt contest (it’s not what you think) and two of them were on the winning scavenger hunt team! During downtimes, they played football and basketball and I hear Khalif learned how to use my Blackberry to play MP3s.
We all had a blast and word is spreading around the neighborhood. I wouldn’t be surprised if next year, we have a much more formidable team. I’ll look forward to it!
*Note- if anyone wants to give our team $25 dollars to bump us over the $1000 mark, you still can!