Relay for Life off to a great start

| 15 Feb 2012 | 11:33

WEST MILFORD — The Relay for Life will transform the West Milford High School track on June 9-10, 2012 into a community event like none other. That is when cancer survivors, their friends, families, neighbors and those who are remembering loved ones lost to the disease will come together raising money for the American Cancer Society and its drive to eradicate cancer. But much happens before even one walker steps foot on the track. This week was the kick-off meeting of the Relay for Life of the Highlands and, according to organizers, it was a great success. But it is just the start. There will be monthly meetings for anyone interested in helping out in any way. Those meetings will be held at West Milford High Schol on Feb. 29, March 21, April 18 and May 9 at 7:45 p.m. The Relay for Life of the Highlands is an extremely successful event. Last year the American Cancer Society’s director of special events, Jessica Gaeta, created a special award for the West Milford version of the Relay called the “Sun Never Sets on a Relayer” award in recognition of having the most walkers on the track overnight in the Northern New Jersey American Cancer Society region. What is the Relay? The American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life is an overnight celebration of life and cancer survivorship. It is a unique team event designed to raise awareness about cancer as well as raise funds to support the American Cancer Society’s mission, which is to eliminate cancer. But it is a community event, taking place in hundreds of communities around the world. Teams of people from all walks of life joint together and take turns walking, jogging or running laps on the track. But the first lap of the relay is a special one. It's called the survivor lap where all of the cancer survivors in attendance take a victory lap around the track. It is moving and reminds folks right off the bat of why they are there. And it's more The Relay for Life is an opportunity to remind people to do what they can to stay healthy. While not everything can be prevented, more than two-thirds of all cancer deaths are preventable, according to the American Cancer Society. They teach people every day how to live healthier lifestyles and to get regular medical check-ups to decrease their chances of getting cancer. Every dollar raised through Relay for Life goes toward fighting cancer. You can help - starting now Since this is a community event, local businesses have gotten involved as well. Now through June, Macopin Pizza will donate 20 percent of every order on the first Thursday of the month to Relay for Life. Just come by on the first Thursday of every month through June for great pizza or other Italian specialties. You will be helping and getting to enjoy a delicious meal at the same time. And it’s never too early to get your team together. For information, e-mail the local Relay co-chairs, Nicole Rivera and Vickie Evans at You are encouraged to go to the Web site also at, or call Gaeta at 201-457-3418 ext. 2227 or email her at Save the Date Relay for Life of the Highlands June 9-10, 2012 West Milford High School Track 67 Highlander Drive West Milford 201-457-3418 ext. 2227