The number of teams preparing for the American Cancer Society's Rim Country Relay for Life is growing, and event co-chairman Ann Riehle says more are welcome.
Riehle said the relay committee hopes to have 30 teams participating in the June relay and raise $30,000 in its fight against cancer. That goal is more than double the money the fund-raiser made last year, but Riehle thinks it can be reached.
At the first team meeting, several businesses and individuals discussed setting up teams of eight to 15 people and getting them registered.
Riehle said the teams also talked about putting together a letter-writing campaign to get donations from friends and family out of town and around the country.
On the local level, the teams will be vying for the best-decorated booth and will have prizes for these and the top money-raisers. Relay organizers will be looking to each team for the oldest and youngest members. They'll also have awards for the most spirited team and the top money-raising team.
The fight includes raising money before and during the event, selling luminarias honoring people who have cancer and others who have died from the disease. For the public, there'll be food, entertainment, children's activities and a program schedule that includes music, a luminaria lighting ceremony, games, parades and tributes to cancer survivors and victims.
And all during the event, team members will take their turns on the track at the Payson High School football field, providing a 15-hour marathon that includes running, walking, skipping, wheeling, and even sitting.
A breast cancer survivor herself, Riehle said statistics show that cancer is the second-leading cause of death in America.
Since 1947, the American Cancer Society, the largest private, not-for-profit source of research funds, second only to the U.S. government, has invested $2 billion for cancer research.
The local event will be held from 6 p.m. June 2 through 9 a.m. June 3 at Payson High School's football field.
The next team meeting of the Rim Country Relay for Life is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. April 6 at the Senior Circle Building at 215 N. Beeline Highway.
For information, contact Riehle at 472-7448 or Farmer at 474-8168.