SDSU walks ’til dawn to help benefit others

Julie Frank

Julie Frank

SDSU students will give cancer the boot as they participate in the second annual Relay for Life on April 25 at Sexauer Field.

Relay for Life is a team event that raises money for the American Cancer Society and honors those who have battled cancer. It involves teams, made up of 8 to 15 participants, walking laps throughout the night. Teams walk through the night to remind people that cancer never sleeps, according to the Relay for Life’s Web site.

The event is sponsored by Colleges Against Cancer, a group that brings ACS programs to college campuses.

Last year, the event raised $22,000, and this year the goal is $35,000, according to Alissa Miles, the event’s chairperson. Forty-three teams will participate, an increase of 10 teams from last year, and 400 people are involved in the event.

“To know so many students are passionate about this gives you chills,” Miles said.

Relay for Life will begin at 6 p.m., conclude at 6 a.m. and feature three ceremonies, according to Miles.

The Celebrate Ceremony will kick off the event and introduce survivors.

At 8 p.m., luminaries will be lit during the Remember Ceremony. Luminaries are paper sacks filled with sand and a candle. Names are displayed on the bag to remember those who lost their battle to cancer and honor those who survived it.

The event will close with a new ceremony, Fight Back. It will involve participants filling out cards declaring how they will fight cancer.

In addition, a silent auction will be held and other activities will provide entertainment throughout the night, including jitterbug lessons, a frozen t-shirt contest, a talent show and more.

According to the ACS’s Web site, an estimated 1.4 million new cases of cancer will be reported in 2008 with over 4,000 of those in South Dakota. The ACS also estimates over 500,000 people will die from cancer this year.

Relay for Life is a worldwide event, and almost five thousand events are held in the nation with over 3 million participants.

For more information, log on to or email Colleges Against Cancer at [email protected].