It's once again time to start preparing for Relay for Life, which will occur on April 27. This year's event will bring many changes as Relay for Life not only moves indoors, but also becomes 12 hours.
In hopes of having a better turnout and to ensure protection from inclement weather, the event will be moved indoors to the Indoor Tennis and Track Center.
"Last year people complained about being cold," explained coordinator Stewart Burns. "This year there will be no worries about weather."
The change comes, as DePauw University will soon begin upgrading several of its facilities, including Bla-ckstock Stadium, the pervious site of Relay for Life.
"Actually, we really see it as a positive," Burns said. "This year it will be a nice 70 degrees the entire time."
Along with moving the event indoors it will only last for 12 hours rather than the pervious 24. It's a move that coordinators feel will help make it easier for people to become more involved along with participate for the entire duration.
"We are hoping people will stay for the full 12 hours," Burns said. "We would really like for more students and community members to participate."
As Relay for Life moves into its 17th year in Putnam County, the event has raised $2.3 million for cancer patients and is also ranked seventh in the nation for raising the largest amount of money.
The money raised goes toward helping cancer patients get treatments, finding a cure, supplying medical transport, support systems, providing cosmetics and wigs to women and much more. A portion of the money also goes back into the community.
Relay for Life is an event where students and community members come together for a common cause, the fight against cancer. Participants of all ages sign up and are organized into teams to raise money for this fight, with one person from each team walking the track for the entirety of the 12 hours.
"The event is a celebration and memorial, as well as an opportunity for more awareness," Burns said. "Every day, this is a closer fight and a closer solution to the cure. We want to keep it at the front of our minds, and we don't want to lose sight of it."
Those who would like to do more are invited to volunteer to help organize and prepare for the event.
"Right now we have a good group of volunteers," said Burns. "But, if someone would like to volunteer we would certainly make good use of them."
This year's theme is "Tune Out Cancer," a theme co-coordinators Betsy Corrigan and Burns believe that everyone can enjoy and relate to.
"Everyone has their own connection to music and cancer," explained Burns. "We are trying to pull out all the talent in the community."
Live music, which will showcase local talent from around Putnam County and also the DePauw School of Music.
"We are still reaching out to certain outlets," Burns said. "We want to have a good variety."
This year, Relay for Life is looking to identify and honor more cancer patients, survivors and caregivers in the community. In hopes of being able to reach out to those who should be honored, when one signs up for the event they are also able to identify if they are a cancer patient, survivor or a caregiver.
Relay for Life will be held on campus at the Indoor Tennis and Track Center on Saturday, April 27, from noon to midnight. Interested participants, performers and sponsors can sign-up now by visiting www.relayforlife.org/putnamcountyin.
"It's not only April 27 it's 365 days a year, cancer never stops," said Burns.
The Community Kick-off event will take place on Feb. 13 at 7 a.m. at the Putnam Inn along with 7 p.m. in the DePauw University Union Ballroom. There no need to pre-register.
For more information email Burns and Corrigan at email@example.com.