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Relay For Life Coming This Weekend
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This weekend Riverbank will host its long-anticipated Relay For Life, a 24-hour event to increase cancer awareness and raise funds for the American Cancer Society.

Now in its fourth year here, the event will take place at the high school football stadium from 9 a.m. on Saturday, May 22 through the night until 9 a.m. on Sunday, May 23. Visitors are welcome

Members of teams composed of local businesses, community groups and individuals take turns walking or running around the stadium track to earn the monetary pledges they have been gathering for many weeks.

Both spectators and walkers, between turns on the track, can enjoy live entertainment, visiting the team booths and other activities.

Highlights of the event are the opening speeches and survivor lap at 9 a.m. on Saturday, the luminaria ceremony at 8:30 p.m. Saturday and the closing ceremony and final lap at 9 a.m. on Sunday.

There are 26 teams with a varying amount of members, said Shelley Jasper, who is coordinating the city team called "Take Action."

Allowing communities to participate in the fight against cancer while honoring survivors and remembering those lost to the disease, more than 4,200 communities across the country stage Relays each year. In California alone, 270 communities will host such events.

The funds raised go to the Society's patient services programs, cancer research and community education.

The Riverbank event raised $53,000 last year (less $3,000 in expenses) and is aiming for a goal of $70,000 for this weekend's event, said Jasper.