Austintown Relay for Life co-chair Jennifer Pemberton attended the recent township meeting to announce preparations for the 2013 event. She gave the committee's goals and the fact it will be a study site this year.
"Our theme this year will be Searching the World for a Cure," Pemberton said, "and the sun will be shining in June."
The event will take place June 7 to 8 at Fitch Stadium. It begins at 6 p.m. Friday with the traditional opening survivor's lap then will continue for 24 hours non-stop.
"Cancer and chemotherapy never stops for a cancer patient. They don't get a break and that is why we go 24 hours," she said.
Pemberton said this year's goal will be $125,000 to go towards helping cancer patients and to find a cure. Township Trustee Jim Davis said he is sure they will meet or exceed that goal, based on past performances.
"Last year, the goal was $118,000 and we ended up raising $121,000," Pemberton said.
She announced that this year, the Austintown Relay was the only one in the area selected by the American Cancer Society as a Cancer Prevention Study III site. She said the study, open to anyone age 30 to 65, is an important fact-finding mission for the ACS. The first study done years ago was the one that related smoking to cancer. People can simply show up at the Relay, fill out some paperwork and agree to participate over the next 20 years. She said smokers and nonsmokers are welcome to participate.
"Since we are the only ones in the area selected for this study, it should bring in a lot more people to our Relay," Pemberton said.
The goal for number of teams this year has been set at 35. As of last week, 20 teams have already signed up and Pemberton is hoping to exceed that goal within the next two months. For information on the Austintown Relay and how to participate, visit www.RelayForLife.org/Austintown.