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Niagara University students participate in last year's Relay For Life on campus. From left, are Laura Ortiz, Morgan Genovese and Shania van Nuland. (Photo courtesy of Olivia Wood)
Niagara University students participate in last year's Relay For Life on campus. From left, are Laura Ortiz, Morgan Genovese and Shania van Nuland. (Photo courtesy of Olivia Wood)

Student-organized Relay For Life events set for April 7

Fri, Mar 31st 2017 07:20 pm

Niagara County Community College will hold its fourth annual Relay For Life to benefit the American Caner Society from 6 p.m. Friday, April 7, to 6 a.m. Saturday, April 8. The event will be held in the main gym, on NCCC's Sanborn campus at 3111 Saunders Settlement Road.

The event is an overnight community celebration, where individuals and teams camp out, dance, play games and take turns circling around a track to raise funds and fight cancer.

Featured will be midnight bowling, basket auctions, chair massages and a movie showing. Performances will also take place by Psycho Beach (featuring NCCC's own Bob Bucella), the NCCC Rock ensemble, the NCCC Jazz Ensemble and the Tanzen dance ensemble.

The main goals of this event are "to raise money, have fun and to help others. There are lots of people in the world that need a helping hand and we want make a difference," said Shanasia King, president of Cancer Awareness Club at NCCC.

"The whole thing was initiated by a group of students," said Chris Tirella, Cancer Awareness Club moderator and assistant professor of math at NCCC. "Every year new students step up and take over the leadership role."

She added, "It's amazing to me to see a group of students in this age group really start something like this and keep it going, to be thinking so outside of themselves."

The event is free and open to the public. Pre-registration is encouraged. Walk-ins will be welcome. For more information or to pre-register, visit www.relayforlife.org/NCCCNY.

Another Relay For Life will be hosted at Niagara University from 6 p.m. Friday, April 7, to 2 a.m. Saturday, April 8, on campus at the Kiernan Recreation Center, University Drive, Lewiston.

The event will feature team events, food, music and games throughout the night to help raise funds for the American Cancer Society.

NU Against Cancer, a student organization, is organizing the event, along with a representative from the American Cancer Society.

NU students Olivia Wood and Korinne Thorne are co-captains of The American Cancer Society's Colleges Against Cancer chapter at NU, and NU's Relay For Life.

"Our event is eight hours long ... and each team is asked to have a member on the track at all times to signify that cancer never sleeps," Wood said. "The main goals of our event are to bring together NU students, staff and local community members to raise awareness and money for the American Cancer Society, and to support and celebrate survivors, their families, and anyone who has ever been impacted by this horrible disease."

Bill Newton, assistant director of campus activities, and John Spanbauer, director of the Kiernan Center, recreational and intramural sports, have offered assistance from the university, as well.

"The university community is looking forward to our ACS Relay For Life event next Friday," Newton said. "Last year, over $18,000 was raised for cancer research, and more than 300 students, faculty and staff members participated. The student organization, Niagara University Against Cancer, has been working alongside representatives from the American Cancer Society all year coordinating next week's event and we look forward to coming together as a community again this year to raise funds and promote awareness for cancer research."

Wood said the goal for this year's event is to raise $25,000.

For more information, visit www.relayforlife.org/niagarauniversityny.

Lauren Zaepfel contributed to this report.

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