Relay for Life is back

Clair Eichner, Contributing writer

Thousands of people all around the United States and around the world are diagnosed with cancer each year, and a thousand more friends loved ones are affected by this disease as well.

Mercyhurst students are gearing up for this year’s 7th annual Relay for Life event where they have an immense, but undoubtedly achievable goal of raising $20,000 going toward helping all of those affected with cancer.

Steven Martz and Caitlyn Lear are the chairs of this event, Michael Grasso is the faculty adviser and there are multiple students on the committee with the event being mostly student run.

This year’s relay is set to take place on April 8, from 4 to 10 p.m. in the Mercyhurst Athletic Center (MAC). All Mercyhurst students, both undergraduate and graduate, are invited and encouraged to take place in this event that aims to bring the Mercyhurst community together and supports a cause that is much bigger than ourselves. Faculty and faculty are also welcome and encouraged to attend. People in the Erie community can also attend.

In order to participate, students must register as teams costing $10 per person.

Many clubs sign up as a team, but students are also encouraged to make their own teams for the event. For those who do not want to take on the responsibility of being on a team, coming out and supporting those who are on teams is just as important.

Without the local participants donating money to the cause or specific teams, the event would not be as successful. Local businesses donate money along with prizes for the teams and the committee to give away during the event.

This year’s theme is “Relay Around the World” and all teams will pick a country and showcase their country’s culture with fun activities and exotic food. Each team will have a table and try to raise as much money as they can with the different activities that they have to offer. The relay committee as a whole is working on spotlighting different cultures as well throughout the day with music, dancing, poetry readings and more.

Also, at least one person from each team has to be walking or “relaying” at all times. The much loved and anticipated Pie a Professor is expected to return this year, as well as some new worldly themed activities to keep everyone involved at the event.

“The day is a way to honor survivors and people currently fighting cancer, and so much more,” Martz said.

With the event being two months away, there is still much more work and preparation that will be going into it to making this year a success. Even once the actual event is over, money can still be donated, so there will be even more fun after the walk.

After looking back at the past events and having been so involved in all that goes into the event each year, Martz said he is looking forward to this year and the potential that it holds.

“The most rewarding part of overseeing and being part of such a great event is probably getting that final total from the American Cancer Society. Seeing how much we raised in the year, but also everyone having fun is an important part of the event as well,” Martz said.

Be sure to look for more information to come within the next few weeks and also visit the event website at for more information.