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MATTOON -- Community members are invited to help raise money for the battle against cancer during the annual Relay for Life of Coles County on Aug. 25.

Relay team volunteers will sell concessions and offer other activities from 3 to 11 p.m. at Peterson Park in Mattoon as part of this American Cancer Society benefit. Live music will be featured throughout the day, as well as Disney related activities to go with “The Magic of Relay” theme for the benefit.

One of the Relay’s organizers, Tamara Hayden of Mattoon, said groups of volunteers are invited to form teams to walk in the Relay and raise funds. Hayden said they can get more information and sign up by calling American Cancer Society representative Tony Holly at 217-523-4503.

“They still have plenty of time to start a team,” Hayden said. “There are so many things you could do.”

Hayden said some of the Relay teams set up carnival game booths, adding that games are available for rent at Five Star Rental in Charleston. She said other teams sell concessions, such as the Baptists Believin’ in a Cure team’s taco-in-a-bag booth.

Proceeds from Relay help fund cancer research, as well American Cancer Society programs like the 24/7 cancer help line and free rides to chemotherapy treatments.

Cancer survivors and their caregivers are invited to attend a survivor dinner from 4 to 6 p.m. at the Peterson Park pavilion and then walk a survivor and caregiver lap in the Relay at 6:45 p.m. Hayden, who is a cancer survivor, said harpist Julia Jameson will provide dinner music for them at the pavilion.

The schedule of live music on the main stage includes Janoma Name, 3 p.m.; Murdock Sisters, 3:30 p.m.; Something 4 Cutie, 7 p.m.; Amplified, 8 p.m.; and Tequila Mockingbird, 10 p.m. A disc jockey will play music throughout the day for the Relay walkers.

Demonstrations in front of the main stage will spotlight taekwondo instructor Kevin Roberts’ students at 4:30 p.m., and Mattoon and Charleston high school cheer and dance teams at 5 p.m.

Hayden said “The Magic of Relay” theme will be incorporated into campsite decoration judging, 5 p.m.; a children’s costume contest, 5:45 p.m.; and Disney trivia, 10:30 p.m.

Other scheduled activities include an opening ceremony, 6 p.m.; balloon release, 6:40 p.m.; luminaria ceremony, 9 p.m.; and closing ceremony, 11 p.m.

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Contact Rob Stroud at (217) 238-6861. Follow him on Twitter: @TheRobStroud



Rob Stroud is a reporter for the JG-TC, covering the city of Mattoon, Lake Land College, Cumberland County and areas including Oakland, Casey and Martinsville.

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