ORONO — The Relay For Life of Penobscot County surpassed fundraising expectations this year, with more than $192,000 in donations confirmed as of May 21. The annual event had set a net goal of $176,000, but with a record number of teams and participants, the 2011 Relay for Life of Penobscot County exceeded that goal with more money still coming in.
“Our event has seen steady growth over the past few years, but this year’s tally surpasses what we had expected,” said event co-chairman Chad LaBree. “People really came together to find new and innovative ways to fundraise for the fight against cancer. We had a record number of teams and a record number of participants — and we are already looking forward to growing this relay even more next year.”
This is the first year that the 18-hour walking event was located at the University of Maine.
“Having a larger facility at the University of Maine allowed us to accommodate more teams and more participants, and it allowed us to spread out a little more as well,” said event co-chairman Denise Trafton. “Even though it was raining, people were walking around the track with smiles on their faces and bounces in their steps. There was a renewed energy to the event this year, and I think it will carry over to future years for the Relay for Life of Penobscot County.”
The 2011 Relay for Life of Penobscot County featured 91 teams with more than 800 participants. The highest individual fundraiser for the event was Andrew Sekera, originally of Eddington but now living in Rockland, Mass. Sekera raised more than $5,800 on his own. Sekera’s team, MJ Caps Connection, raised nearly $24,000, enough to declare the Brewer team the highest fundraising team.
Funds raised at Relay For Life enable the American Cancer Society to affect the lives of those touched by cancer by supporting vital, cutting-edge cancer research and by providing cancer patients with services such as transportation to treatment, free lodging at Hope Lodge and round-the-clock support at the national cancer information center at 800-227-2345.
For more information about Relay For Life, visit www.relayforlife.org.