CUMMING — The Cumming Fairgrounds was flooded with purple and superheroes Saturday as the annual Relay for Life of Forsyth County found participants walking for 12 hours to raise awareness and more than $160,000 to fight cancer.
Relay is the largest fundraiser for the American Cancer Society, which supports cancer research and patient programs, including transportation to appointments.
“Cancer has taken too much from us already, so we are here trying to make sure we are doing our part to honor our loved ones who aren’t here anymore and those who have gone through cancer,” said Brooke VanBuskirk, senior community manager for Relay.
The event featured games, Touch a Truck, food, raffles and vendor booths, with all of the proceeds donated to the cause.
A sheriff’s office patrol vehicle, which can be seen throughout the county, was wrapped in purple with the Relay logos as a donation.
A total of 54 teams and 689 participants raised $164,996, with top fundraisers including Maggie Paoletti, Northside Hospital-Forsyth and Frosty Acres Brands.
Each team was supposed to have at least one member walking on the track throughout the 12-hour event, Van Buskirk said.
Special laps were dedicated to cancer survivors, caregivers and hometown heroes, including police officers, firefighters, EMS personnel and doctors.
A memorial lap was also dedicated to those who have lost their fight, with participants lighting luminaria bags that floated while friends and family took the lap.