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Hundreds expected for Halls Relay for Life May 13-14
Annual event benefits American Cancer Society
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Ray Yates, a 20-year testicular cancer survivor, walks during the survivor's walk at the 2015 Relay for Life event at the University of North Georgia. This year's event will be May 13-14.

2016 Relay for Life of Hall County

When: 7 p.m. Friday, May 13, to 2 a.m. Saturday, May 14

Where: University of North Georgia Gainesville campus, 3820 Mundy Mill Road, Oakwood

More info: www.relayforlife.org/hallga or 770-297-1176

One of the area’s biggest annual parties includes music, dancing and food through the night, all for a good cause.

The 2016 Relay for Life of Hall County will be 7 p.m. May 13 to 2 a.m. May 14 at the University of North Georgia’s Gainesville campus.

The annual event raises funds for the American Cancer Society and celebrates cancer patients and survivors.

“I would describe it as a big party,” said Rose Riddle with Relay for Life of Hall County. “Different teams have different activities and things for sale — some have food, some have jewelry, some have games — and it’s just a really good time.”

Riddle said 105 teams with more than 1,000 participants are registered for this year’s relay. Each team participant gets a T-shirt for raising a minimum of $100.

The event begins with a survivor lap at 7 p.m., Riddle said.

“That’s when the survivors walk around the track, and for those that are unable to walk we’ll have golf carts for them,” she said. “We have some that come out that have just started treatment. A lot of them just want to try to walk.”

After the survivor lap is a caregiver lap, Riddle said, for caretakers, family members or anyone the survivor wants with them.

The third lap is a remembrance lap, specifically for the caregivers and family members who have lost someone to cancer.

Finally, the team laps begin, and participants can relay around the track and participate in games led by jB Jams Entertainment and Events.

The evening includes karaoke, line dancing and a food truck alley.

There is still time for team sign-up, and campsites are still available, though pre-registration to attend the event is not necessary. Call the Relay for Life office at 770-297-1220 for more information about signing up.

Riddle said she works with the American Cancer Society in particular because only about 7 percent of funds raised go to administrative costs. It also has a variety of programs that support cancer patients and survivors at every stage of treatment.

“I would encourage people to come out just to see what we do,” she said. “Our goal is to get rid of cancer. That’s the reason I participate.”