Ricky Rivera will step onto the track Friday with 44 other teams for Weston's first-ever Relay for Life event. "My mom battled cancer three times," said Rivera, co-president of Weston High School's student government. "Because it's so personal, I can be more passionate about it there's a strong motivation to get people involved."
More than 400 participants will walk the track at Weston High from 7 p.m. Friday to 7 a.m. Saturday to support the American Cancer Society. The teams had raised more than $53,000 as of Thursday afternoon.
Lisa Wolak, Weston High's principal, wanted to host Relay for Life in Weston after her husband died of cancer in November. At the relay, each team delegates members to walk the school track in shifts. The goal of each team is to always have one member circling the track.
The top fundraising teams as of Thursday afternoon were: Kids 4 a Cure with $8,125, Strides of Hope with $5,145 and Band of Hope with $4,120. Top participants are Stephanie Thomson with $3,830, Jaclyn Kolbert with $3,535 and Madeleine Purcell with $2,700.
Different activities will be held to raise more money for the American Cancer Society. Wolak, along with other administrators, will be participating in a pie toss. For $5, anyone can throw two pies in the administrators' faces.
"I've never had a chance to do something relating to cancer and my mom," said Rivera. "It's nice to have something I can support and be part of."
Other events Friday will include face painting, henna tattoos and live bands, and the booster barn will donate 30 percent of its proceeds to the cancer society. Rivera said the initial goal set was to raise $30,000. Once that goal was surpassed, the goal was bumped to $45,000, and now it has been raised to $55,000.
"Cancer is so applicable to so many people. It's a good cause to fight for," said Rivera.
The opening ceremony will be at 7 p.m., followed by the Luminaria ceremony at 9:30 p.m., the Fight Back ceremony at 11 p.m. and the closing ceremony at 7 a.m. Teams can start setting up at 4 p.m.
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