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Saturday, June 14, 2014

Relay for Life 2014 - The Rainy Day Edition

As promised, I have a complete look at the 2014 Rely for Life event that yours truly took part in on June 13th and 14th. 

First things first, I do apologize for the lateness of this blog.  When one walks around a track from seven in the evening until seven the following morning, it tends to make a person not want to do much other than sleep!  But, trust me.  The coverage that I will be showing you will hopefully be worth the wait.

There's just one minor snag that I didn't realize until I watched the videos in the playback.  I didn't know that the camera in my iPod didn't automatically rotate when you switched the camera angle.  As a result, some of my videos were accidentally filmed sideways.  It's not a big deal.  I edited the videos on YouTube and made them so that they would rotate 90 degrees...but apparently it takes time to reformat the videos, so you'll have to be patient on that one (and also have great neck muscles to truly appreciate the video).

So, the Relay for Life adventure for myself began at four in the afternoon on June 13.  We had a bit of rain coming down earlier in the day, but at 4:00, it was nice and clear.  It was perfect.  Almost too perfect.

And it was here that I made my first video.

I'll also show you a couple of other things too.

This was the banner that I worked on at the store during my day off.  It still looks amazing, and the paint is absolutely water resistant.  Keep that in mind.

I also did up a sign where we could keep track of all the laps that we did.  Unfortunately, circumstances prevented us from using it.  Whatever the case, here's what it originally looked like.

And, our campsite looks pretty decent, don't you think?

By the way...did I tell you that a total of 29 different teams signed up for the Relay for Life this year?  Here's just one of the many that made an appearance.

Anyway, right around five o'clock, I was starting to get a little bored, so I decided to have a stroll around part of the track, and I point out some of the buildings and some other teams that really went all out on their decorations. This was one of the videos that I tried to fix on forewarned, it might still be sideways when you go to view it.

(By the way, right next to our camp, all we could smell was buttered popcorn.  That's because the team next door to us sold popcorn for $2 a bag, with all proceeds going to the event.  Our Cancer Kickers really must come up with something like that for our team because it was an ingenious idea!)

At 6:45pm, all the teams were summoned up to the main stage where we would be hosting our survivor walk and partake in our warm-up ceremonies.  And here's a few photos and a video to detail exactly that.  But why does the sky look so dark?  This can't mean that we're going to get a storm...can it?

While we were waiting for the Survivor Lap to start (after a woman bravely spoke about the cancer battle her granddaughter was fighting and winning), I decided to interview our team captain.  Again, I've requested this video be fixed too, so bear with me here.

And, just after 7:00, the Survivor Lap began...and just have to see it.

From there we were supposed to do our team laps around the track, and get our team pictures taken, and walk around the track as many times as we could.  But Mother Nature had her own plans.

A flash of lightning and a torrential downpour sent all of us scurrying around the track, trying to find shelter.  Thankfully, we were just a few feet away from our own shelter (which was surprisingly cozy and warm), and we all huddled in the tent area while the rain was falling.

That's where the teaser video came from.  Here.  I'll play it again.

The rain lasted a total of 45 minutes.  The track got flooded.  Unfortunately, some luminaries were unfair casualties of the storm, and some of them were damaged beyond repair.  Fortunately, the ones that remained, the volunteer staff worked overtime to drain the bags out so that they could be lit.  Some people even replaced the luminaries that were destroyed.  It was just one of those freak summer storms that you couldn't predict. 

The good part about it all was that we all bonded as a team during that summer storm.  I think that helped us get our motivation going when we were finally given the all clear - even though we had to rebuild our campfire as the rain successfully put it out.

And once we were back on the track, I filmed another little video.

Unfortunately, once the sun went down, my videos became pointless.  I tried to film one where they were lighting the luminaries, but as you can didn't turn out.  

At least you can HEAR the luminary ceremony.

And, I did get some shots of my grandfather's luminary below.  I bought three - one for him, and two more for my co-workers who died of cancer related illnesses.

As the night went on, some people left to go home, but I (and eight others from our team) stayed on the track, listening to music and live performances, collecting beads for the bead laps, grabbing some food and drinks when needed.  The Relay this year was a little bit more subdued this year due to the bad weather and the fact that our event was competing against a Ribfest in another town.  But it was still a great deal of fun...and here's two final videos for you to watch.  One talks about how it feels to do over thirty laps on the track...and the other talks about how much money we raised for the Relay this year!

Thanks so much to the Relay for Life committee for having another banner year, and special thanks to the Walmart Cancer Kickers Kim, Dorothy, Marg, Carol, Theresa, Paul, Jay, Albert, Christina, Lorissa, and Ann!

And's one last picture.  The purple ribbon is the one that I used for the bead run in 2013.  The red one is the one used for this year's Relay.  No wonder I'm exhausted!  All in was for a great cause!

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