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Annual Relay for Life moves online due to pandemic

A cancer research fundraiser in the Border City is going virtual this year.

The 21st annual Relay for Life in Lloydminster won’t be in Bud Miller Park this year instead it will take place online as part of a larger national event. The relay will be shifting to fundraising via videos and social media. The Relay from Home will take place on June 13 at 5 p.m. MST. 

Saskatchewan Division Fundraising Coordinator Aurora Marinari says the event will still follow the same format as previous years.

“It includes the major touchpoints of the Relay for Life. There will be a survivor’s ceremony and survivors spokesperson as well as a luminaries ceremony and a physical exercise warm up that people can do in their home led by one of our staff members.”

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Participants are free to walk for the event if they choose and are encouraged to practice physical distancing. The usual registration fee of $15 will be recognized instead as a donation and pledge minimums have been waived. Money raised for the event will go towards cancer research.

“It’s always been a variation of different things that the money has been used for. This year, it’s likely going to be for research as a lot of our programming had to be paused due to the pandemic because they were peer-to-peer.”

Marinari says their Wheels of Hope service has also been paused. The service allows volunteers to drive cancer patients to their appointments if they can’t afford the cost to travel.

“[They’ve] been suspended in order to respect physical distancing regulations as well as to look after our volunteers and patients and those we seek to help.”

The Canadian Cancer Society cancelled all in-person fundraising events until September 30 due to the pandemic. Marinari says they’ve estimated a $80-million loss due to the cancellations across the country. 

To sign up or donate to the Relay of Life, visit the Lloydminster chapter’s page on the website. Last year, the Relay for Life raised just over $17,000.

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