By SCOTT MCKIE B.P.
ONE FEATHER STAFF
Tears will flow, feet will ache and money will be raised at the upcoming Relay for Life event in Cherokee. A total of eleven teams will walk for twelve hours at the event scheduled for Friday, Aug. 23 at the Cherokee Indian Fairgrounds.
Julie Wilnoty, one of the organizers of the event, related that the monetary goal is to raise $30,000. “We’re hoping to meet it. It’s looking good.”
She said that while it is a team-oriented event, it is also very much an individual event that can bring personal healing. “I relay for myself, I relay for my mom, I relay for my dad. I relay for other people that have touched my life in various ways.”
“The overall goal of the American Cancer Society is for survivors to have more birthdays. Relay is a magical night. It’s tears of joy and tears of hope.”
One team, the Native Honey Badgers, is hosting a Relay Idol contest at 10pm. The entry fee is $10 with all proceeds going to the Relay event. There will be a teen division and adult division. For more information on the Relay Idol, contact Alissa Lambert 788-7145.
Harrah’s Cherokee employees have already contributed over $3,100 to the Relay event. They raised $1,319 in cupcake sales and another $1,800 in an employee raffle.
Principal Chief Hicks signed a proclamation earlier in the month official proclaiming August as “Relay for Life Days” in Cherokee. The proclamation states, in part, “…money raised during Relay for Life of Cherokee (Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians) supports the American Cancer Society’s mission of saving live and creating a world with less cancer and more birthdays – by helping people stay well, by helping people get well, by finding cures for cancer and by fighting back…”
Wilnoty added, “All proceeds go to the American Cancer Society. It all stays in this area. It doesn’t go to the other side of the country. Also, we’re the only relay event that’s on an Indian reservation and that’s pretty cool.”
“We’re still a young Relay, but we’ve been noticed.”