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photo: Hope Matters team

Preparation for May's Relay for Life

With the big event right around the corner, groups of Nutley citizens are coming together and raising money for cancer awareness. Relay for Life is a fundraiser, benefiting the American Cancer Society.  It is not an event that is only taking place in Nutley; there are more than 1.3 million participants worldwide involved in raising money for a cure.


Events such as Paint the Town Purple, the Loud and Proud wrestling tournament, and the Relay Fashion Show are the main town-wide events which raise money in advance of the event. Some teams also stand in front of stores and restaurants such as ShopRite and the Nutley Diner as another way to raise money for their team.


Relay for Life takes place on May 18, 2018 at Demuro Park in Nutley. Teams set up tents to stay overnight, walk the track, setup on-site events, and food and beverages are also served.


“Each event is six to 24 hours in length and each team is asked to have a member on the track at all times to signify that cancer never sleeps,” said Steve Cavanaugh, a lead member of the Nutley Relay for Life committee. “Cancer patients do not stop because they’re tired, and for one night, neither do we.”


Every year, The Nutley Relay for Life committee raises a large amount of money for cancer awareness. “The total amount raised each year does of course vary, but The Nutley Relay for Life has on average raised north of $100,000 per year since its inception 12 years ago,” Steve explains. “In total, The Nutley Relay for Life has raised just under $1.2 million to date in the fight against cancer!”


As for teams, 32 teams are participating in The Nutley Relay for Life so far. The team currently with the most amount of money is the Nutley Parks and Recreation, raising a total of $12,023. “This money will count towards their overall team fundraising goal,” Steve said.


Jackie Sauers, a member of the Hope Matters Relay for Life team, has a positive attitude towards participating in this event. “I feel good about preparing for Relay for Life, although my team and I don’t have a lot of money raised. I feel like we are going to raise the amount we planned on before the event,” she says. The Hope Matters team is made up of Meagan Kane, Sarah Bramley, Emily Hoffer, Tatyana Salazar, Alexandria Duffe, Maria Rodriguez, Michael Mills, Derrick Kurtzmann, Corrine Cosenzo, and Daniel Pikhart.


The total amount of money each team raises goes towards research and the fight against cancer around the globe. Even small donations can help individual cancer patients. Raising just $100 could help ten newly diagnosed patients get personalized information kits and $150 may provide five free rides to treatment.


Overall, the main purpose of Relay for Life is to come together and to help fight the battle against cancer. A small donation can go a long way. The Nutley community has donated $1.2 million to date, and people from all around the world are continuing to donate money to the fight against cancer.