Relay for Life already attracting support

LIHU‘E — The American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life is not until April 28 at Hanapepe Stadium, but preparations for the event are in full swing.

Hot on the heels of a team captains’ meeting last Thursday, the Kukui‘olono breakfast club spent its monthly meeting last Friday listening to American Cancer Society representatives while creating luminaria for the upcoming event.

Last Saturday, a break in the weather saw people take advantage of the Hawai‘i Government Employees Association (HGEA) rummage sale at its Aikahi Street headquarters to benefit this year’s Relay for Life.

“You needed to come early,” said Sherry Amimoto, an HGEA member and volunteer for the rummage sale, adding that there were lots of bargains.

Priscilla Badua and Becky Komaki, both HGEA members and also members of the West Kaua‘i Methodist Church, took advantage of the gathering to showcase Komaki’s recipe for malasadas.

Normally, the West Kaua‘i Methodist Church morsels are only available at certain times of the year, including the recent Waimea Town Celebration, where crews worked non-stop for two days to satisfy people’s appetite for the delicacy.

“We will be at the Relay, but we won’t have malasadas,” Badua said.

For more information about the Relay for Life, visit www.relayforlife.org.  

Following the April 28 Relay at Hanapepe, which starts at 6 p.m. and runs until 6 a.m., the North Shore will host its Relay for Life on April 29.

The HGEA is one of 34 teams currently registered for the Relay, according to the ACS events website. So far,  242 participants have signed up for the event with approximately $27,000 already pledged.

Dr. Gordy Klatt, a Tacoma, Wash., colorectal surgeon, is credited with starting the Relay for Life in the mid-1980s.

He wanted to raise more funds for a local American Cancer Society office while showing support for all of his patients who had battled cancer.

He decided he would raise money by running in a marathons.

In May 1985, Klatt spent 24 hours circling the track at Baker Stadium at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, running more than 83 miles.

Today, Relays for Life take place around the world.

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