Teams bring fun and fundraising to Relay

Roseville-Eastpointe Relay for Life sign-up is still open

By: Sara Kandel | Roseville - Eastpointe Eastsider | Published March 15, 2013

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ROSEVILLE — The Roseville-Eastpointe Relay for Life is scheduled for June 8, and with walk day just three months away, event organizers are hoping more teams will join in the fun, the fight and the fundraising.

“The teams are the fundraisers for the event,” said Eastpointe resident Kathy Smith, the event chair for the 2013 Roseville-Eastpointe Relay. “Without the teams, there wouldn’t be an event.”

Event coordinators hope to get 23 teams signed up this year. They’re getting close, but not quite there yet. So far, 18 teams have signed up. They came close to meeting the goal last year — 23 teams signed up, but four dropped out before event day.

So this year, they’re revamping their efforts and staying focused on having the biggest and highest-yielding Relay in their 10-year history in Roseville.

“We are trying to get more people involved,” Smith said. “We want to get more teams signed up and get more corporate teams involved, too. The teams are what makes the event so much fun.”

Not only do teams do all the fundraising for the event, but each team also is responsible for setting up a booth at the event. Some booths sell food items, some feature an activity or game, some have merchandise and some offer services — like manicures or face painting.

“One of the teams has a jail and people can pay to get someone thrown in there, and they’ll actually go walking around the event looking for the person, then arrest them and bring them to the jail,” Smith said. “And the person actually has to stay in there until they can get someone who doesn’t know them to take a picture of them.”

Each team is asked to submit an item for a silent auction.

“The silent auction brings in some really cool baskets, and it raises a lot of money,” Smith said. “The team gets to keep whatever bids come in from it, too, so it helps their total go up.”

It’s not a super competitive event, but the top three fundraising teams are recognized on the Relay website following the event, and it’s started a culture of friendly competition. Many teams have already started to fund-raise.

The Roseville Community Schools team has already raised $10,070, and other teams are working together on pre-event fundraisers. For the fourth year in a row, multiple teams have come together for a pre-event fundraiser dinner from 6 p.m. to midnight April 22 at the Warren/Sterling Heights Elks Hall.

“It doesn’t matter if they raise $1 or $10,000 — there are no losers, because we are all fighting the same fight,” said Linda Weishaupt. “Everybody is welcome here and we just want the community to get involved.”

Weishaupt, an Eastpointe resident, is a team captain and committee chair for the event. She first became involved with Relay for Life three years ago, and her passion for the event continues to grow.

“When I started this a couple years ago, I didn’t know anybody; I just knew I wanted to get involved. Now they’re all like family, just after a couple years,” Weishaupt said. “Everybody works together. Everybody works for a common goal. Everybody accepts everybody for what they are. It’s wonderful. It’s like I have a whole new family.”

To get involved, join a team, start a team or get more information on the 2013 Roseville-Eastpointe Relay for Life, call American Cancer Society coordinator Dorothy Busignani at (248) 663-3418, visit www.relayforlife.org/rosevillemi or stop by the next Relay meeting, scheduled for 7 p.m. April 16 at the Roseville Community School Administration Building.

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