Relay for raising awareness


People gather for the Luminaria ceremony. The event lasted 14 hours, starting on Friday night going into Saturday morning.

Liz Bustamante, Author

Friday, May 6 through Saturday, May 7, people from across Lake County gathered for the Relay for Life. Relay for Life is a series of events focused on remembering and supporting people who have been affected by cancer.

“One of the things we did was [watch] the Luminaria ceremony. Anyone that signed up could set up a white bag to commemorate a loved one. During the ceremony, spectators gathered together and remembered the relatives and friends lost to cancer,” Gavin Baisa (11) said.

Participants formed teams and brought tents to set up individual camps. These people sold goods, such as cupcakes, to raise money for the American Cancer Society.

“I helped run the bake sale my team and I had going, and as one of the team captains, I made sure everyone on my team was OK and happy,” Denisse Marrufo (11) said.

By 10 p.m. people gathered at the center of the Lake County Fairgrounds with glow sticks. A volunteer shared an interactive speech in which the people cracked their glow sticks when the narrator read a cancer situation that had affected them.

“My favorite part was being able to share the experience with my friends and getting to meet and hear other people’s experiences with cancer and how they dealt with having family members with cancer,” Marrufo said.

The event lasted from 6 p.m. on Friday night to 8 a.m. on Saturday morning.