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Relay for Life organizers looking for more volunteers

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MASSENA - Although it’s still a few months away, organizers are already planning for June’s Massena/Louisville Relay for Life.

But they need some volunteer help to plan for and assist with the event.

“Right now we’re in need of volunteers. Presently there are eight volunteers to do it. The push is to get volunteers. There are many chairperson positions still open,” according to Denise M. Furnace, who serves as publicity chair for the event.

The organizing committee will be meeting at 6 p.m. tonight at the Massena Meals on Wheels building, East Hatfield Street, and she said there’s an open invitation for others to join them.

“We have one meeting a month, maybe an hour or two depending on what’s going on. The big thing is the Friday and Saturday of the relay, being there to set up, staying the night and picking up the next day,” Ms. Furnace said.

Volunteers don’t necessarily need to be present for the entire event, she said. They can work as their schedule allows them at the Louisville Community Center, where this year’s Relay for Life will be held from 6 p.m. June 7 to 6 a.m. June 8.

For instance, Ms. Furnace said, if a person has to work all day Friday, their help would be appreciated at the event that night or with the clean-up the next day.

“Even if it’s a few hours here, a few hours there for setup,” she said.

Each Relay for Life begins with a Survivor’s Lap, and a volunteer can help plan the survivor events. Others can assist with tasks like planning for food, safety and security, entertainment and activities, and team development and registration.

In addition to volunteers, Ms. Furnace said they’re always looking for more teams to participate in the relay.

“We’re always pushing for more teams this year. More teams obviously means more money,” she said.

Money raised through the local Relay for Life helps support American Cancer Society research, education, advocacy and patient services in St. Lawrence County.

Organizers will hold their kick-off Feb. 6 at the Meals on Wheels building. That’s when they’ll hand out information packets to team captains and anyone else who is interested in participating this year.

In the meantime, they’ll also be marching in the Massena Winter Carnival parade and “painting the town purple.”

The purple ribbons will be tied around poles, along with a notecard that gives the details for the kick-off event.

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