RELAY FOR LIFE of Shiawassee County kicked off its 2020 season – its 25th in Shiawassee County – on Monday, Jan. 13 with an informational open house at Memorial Healthcare. The open house format provided an opportunity for teams to gather and sign up, as well as to learn about fundraising events and chat with members of the local Relay For Life planning committee.

   This year’s theme is “IT TAKES A VILLAGE.” The 2020 Relay For Life event, presented by Memorial Healthcare, will be on Saturday, May 16 from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. at McCurdy Park in Corunna, which is hosting the event for the 2nd-consecutive year. The event was previously held at the Shiawassee County Fairgounds.

   The 12-hour event is an opportunity to celebrate people who have been touched by cancer, remember loved ones lost and take action for lifesaving change. Symbolizing the battle waged around the clock by those facing cancer, the event empowers the community to take a stand against cancer. Since 1985, Relay For Life events have raised nearly $6.5 billion for the American Cancer Society.

   Those who were unable to attend the Jan. 13 kick-off can still take part in this year’s Relay For Life season by starting or joining a fundraising team, volunteering to help plan or organize the May 16 event, making a donation or inviting a cancer survivor to be celebrated.

   To learn more about Relay For Life, or to participate in the 2020 event, visit or search for “Relay For Life of Shiawassee County MI” on social media. And while the county’s Relay For Life event will take place in May, donations can still be made through mid-June. The planning committee has set a fundraising goal of $50,000 for this year’s fundraising season.

   The event at McCurdy Park will begin with an opening survivor ceremony honoring everyone who has been affected by cancer and everyone who has contributed to the success of the 2020 season. There will be a survivor/caregiver picture and picnic at noon and a luminaria ceremony at 10 p.m., with each light representing a life; a life taken by cancer, a survivor of cancer or a person still fighting the disease. Following the luminaria ceremony, everyone will be invited to camp out in the park for the Relay 5th Quarter, which will include a midnight pizza party, a family film, s’mores and a bonfire.

   Relay For Life of Shiawassee County is currently selling popcorn from the Wooden Crate Popcorn Co. as a fundraiser, and the group will be selling Wooden Crate cinnamon glazed nuts in February. Check out the aforementioned social media page for more information or to place an order, or visit

   Shown during the Jan. 13 kick-off event is the Relay For Life of Shiawassee County planning committee, which is being led by 21-year Relay participant Jessica Douglas (back row, fifth from right) for the second year.

(Independent Photo/Graham Sturgeon)

Relay For Life was last modified: January 20th, 2020 by Karen Elford