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Rain can't stop Relay
Walkers weather conditions during fundraiser
Relay WEB 1
Participants pause for the national anthem on Friday at the beginning of the annual Relay for Life event, an American Cancer Society fundraiser held at the Cumming Fairgrounds. - photo by Jim Dean

A little rain couldn’t dampen Forsyth County’s desire to fight cancer.

Despite soggy conditions Friday night, more than 1,000 people came out to participate in the annual Relay for Life at the Cumming Fairgrounds.

“Cancer doesn’t stop for rain, so we’re not going to either,” said Amy Richardson, senior community manager with the American Cancer Society.

“I was humbled by the number of people that came out in the wind and the wet and the rain. It did my heart good to see the steady stream of people walking into Relay with their umbrellas, determined to relay no matter what.”

Richardson said about $57,000 was raised during the overnight event, which began at 6 p.m. Friday and went until 6 a.m. Saturday.

In total, some $261,000 has been collected for this year’s local Relay for Life effort. Fundraising continues in hopes of reaching this year’s goal of $315,000.

Richardson said people can still raise money for the effort through August.

“People can continue to fundraise and turn in money and make donations and we will still accept them all,” she said.

Donations can be made online at

As for Friday’s event, Richardson said nearly 70 teams walked continuously for the 12 hours in honor of cancer survivors and those who have lost their battles to the disease.

The only change that had to been made to the night’s agenda due to the rain was relocating the luminary ceremony. The memorial luminaries, paper bags filled with sand and a lighted candle, are usually placed around the walking track.

“We moved them under a pavilion because … it just wasn’t feasible because of the water,” Richardson said. “It was really beautiful though, over where we did hold it.”

Richardson called this year’s relay “a huge success.”

“I just thank everyone for showing us at the American Cancer Society the heart that Forsyth County has for the fight against cancer,” she said.