The 18-hour East Gadsden County Relay For Life in Quincy to raise money for the American Cancer Society was a big success, according to Angie Carter, Relay coordinator.
"We had more participants this year than we had in the past. At one time there were about 500 people at the track either walking or sitting in their campsites," Carter said.
Campers were very creative in their decorations for this year's theme, "Once Upon A Cure." While most teams packed up and headed home after midnight, Carter said a few teams stayed the entire 18 hours, from 5 p.m. Friday until 11 a.m. Saturday.
This year’s goal was $82,000. Carter said that by Saturday morning, $46,000 had been collected. But people who want to donate can still do so by mailing their donations to the American Cancer Society, 2619 Centennial Blvd., Suite 101, Tallahassee, FL 32308. On the memo line, write “East Gadsden Relay For Life.” Please send the envelope to the attention of Amanda May.
Spirits were high throughout the evening. Smoke from barbecue grills filled the air and children playing various games made for a festive atmosphere.
"I came out to participate because I want to raise money for a cure and I want to bring awareness to cancer," said Bennie Johnson, who is a survivor and was also a participant in the reverse beauty pageant, which was a big hit.
There was lots of entertainment from praise and worship dancers from churches throughout the county to high school step teams. Teams also entertained themselves, like the Powell family, who had a lively game of Bid Whist going for several hours. Campers also entertained themselves with music and and food.
Gadsden County Sheriff Morris Young said contributions were coming in slowly. In the past, he said, the GCSO team was ahead in donations
“It's the economy. People just don't have the money," he said.
Despite the lack of donations expected, Carter remained upbeat and said Gadsden County has until August to reach its goal.