Celebrate real-life superheroes at this weekend’s Relay For Life

Students at CWRU Relay For LifeLast weekend, Marvel’s Captain America 2: The Winter Soldier hit the big screen, featuring superheroes battling adversity with Cleveland as their backdrop. This weekend, the Case Western Reserve University community can see real-life heroes: those battling cancer, supporting their loved ones in their fight against cancer and who lost their battles.

Taking place April 12-13 at Coach Bill Sudeck Track in North Residential Village, Relay For Life is a 15-hour fundraising event for the American Cancer Society. The theme for this year’s event is “Superheroes.”

This year, the organization expanded with the help of the American Cancer Society’s Colleges Against Cancer. The CWRU student chapter—newly formed at the end of the 2013 spring semester—strives to promote advocacy, cancer education, survivorship and Relay For Life all year long in order to reach a vast audience.

“Relay For Life has become a campus tradition at Case Western Reserve where students, faculty, staff and the community comes together to celebrate survivors, remember those we’ve lost and fight back against cancer,” said Relay For Life co-chair Alissa Prior.

The opening ceremony will kick off at noon with remarks from President Barbara R. Snyder, Provost W.A. “Bud” Baeslack III and Vice President of Student Affairs Lou Stark.

After the opening ceremony, individuals will walk laps around the track for 15 hours. Participants even can take part in “themed laps,” such as Superhero, Piggy Back, a three-legged race and more. The first themed lap of the event will be a “Survivor Lap” for cancer survivors or their virtual representatives. Later in the night, there will be a luminaria ceremony, during which members of the campus community can remember loved ones lost to cancer by dedicating a luminaria bag.

When they’re not walking, participants and supporters alike can take part in competitions and events. The schedule includes:

April 12

Noon: Opening Ceremony
12:30 p.m.: Provost Pancake Brunch
3 p.m.: Online Fundraising Challenge
5:30 p.m.: Class Officer Collective Wing Eating Contest
8:45 p.m.: Luminaria Ceremony

April 13

Midnight: Pizza Party
Midnight: Undergraduate Student Government Kickball Tournament
1 a.m.: Euchre Tournament
2:30 a.m.: Closing Ceremony

Relay for LifeIn addition, there will be Zumba and yoga classes and performances by CWRU student groups throughout the event. Visit the Relay For Life at CWRU website for a full schedule of events.

Already, nearly 60 teams comprising almost 600 participants have signed up to take part, and they’ve raised more than $37,000. The goal this year is to raise $67,325.

“The Relay For Life of Case Western Reserve University has consistently been a top-fundraising event in the area since it began,” said Rachel McKelvey, American Cancer Society staff liaison to Relay For Life at CWRU. “Since 2008, this event has raised over $400,000 for the American Cancer Society.”

Interested individuals still can join a team by visiting relayforlife.org/cwru, or simply come participate in the event.