One of the most successful Relay for Lifes in the country is set for this weekend at Thomson High School.
McDuffie County's Relay for Life kicks off at 6 p.m. with the opening ceremonies, followed by the annual Survivors' Lap at 6:15 p.m. There's a luminary ceremony set for about 9 p.m., and the closing ceremonies will follow Saturday morning around 8 a.m.
So far, 2,300 people signed up as team participants on 58 teams, both increases over last year. An estimated 250 survivors will walk the first lap, which is more than last year, said Relay Co-Chairman and Thomson Mayor Bob Knox. He said organizers also expected an increase in the number of survivors at a special dinner that was held Wednesday night at the First Methodist Church ofThomson.
"We are very encouraged," he said Tuesday. "It looks like we're going to have a great event this year."
As of Tuesday, about $120,000 had already been raised toward the 2006 goal of $200,000, Mr. Knox said.
"Which is fantastic considering our big bank night is Thursday. That's great. So everything points to a very successful event, and we're looking forward to it."
Summer Garrison - the Community Manager for the American Cancer Society - encouraged people to sign up and participate in the event.
"You don't have to be on a team to participate in the Relay," she said. "When you come, though, you're sure to be touched, excited and inspired by something you find during the Relay."