Joel Hochstein
UNK Relay for Life co-chair, 308.865.3891

The University of Nebraska at Kearney chapter of Colleges Against Cancer will host Relay for Life, a fundraising event for cancer research, Friday, April 13.

Relay for Life begins at 5 p.m. at Cope Memorial Fountain. The opening ceremony is the Survivor lap, where those who have overcome cancer are recognized. After the honorary lap, participants join in the relay until 5 a.m. Saturday, April 14.

The theme for Relay for Life is “holidays,” and each team will choose a holiday that will serve as a model for their attire and campsite. There will be prizes for the best campsite.

Joel Hochstein, a UNK junior from Hartington and Relay for Life co-chair, said Relay for Life is held to celebrate the lives of those who have won the fight against cancer and remember those whose lives were cut short.

Hochstein said the event is the main fundraising activity sponsored by the American Cancer Society (ACS). He said ACS is an organization devoted to preventing cancer, and Relay for Life is a tool that the group uses to educate the public about ACS services and contributions to cancer research.

The format of Relay for Life is each team will have a representative on the track at all times. At approximately 10 p.m., there will be a luminary ceremony, which will honor those who have been affected by cancer, and will focus on the hope that a cure for cancer will be discovered. A closing ceremony will begin at 4:30 a.m.

Between the ceremonies, the Relay for Life Entertainment Committee will sponsor two live bands, Small Town Hope and Gypsy Outlaw. The pair of bands will perform from 5:30-10 p.m.

Other activities sponsored by the committee include a Guitar Hero, Dance Dance Revolution and frozen T-shirt competition. There will also be a Relay Idol singing competition and Relay Games, which is a team relay event.

Hochstein said Relay for Life teams raise their own funds. Each team member sets a goal of $100 to raise, which he or she attempt to obtain from family, friends, professors or selling a luminary for $10.

Fundraising events have been held in the past to raise monies for Relay for Life teams. Hochstein said a Mantor Hall team held a Punch Pong event and a Conrad Hall team will sponsor a car smash to raise money for the event.

Hochstein said Relay for Life raised approximately $8,000 from 150 participants last year, and the goal for the 2007 Relay for Life is $10,000 from 24 teams. So far, $6,000 has been raised online, and 29 teams from both UNK and Hastings College.

Hochstein said Relay for Life team applications are still being accepted at, and teams can register the day of the event.

Other members of the Relay for Life Committee include co-chairs Josh Hanshaw, a junior from Beatrice, and Annie Skorupa, a senior from Columbus.

The UNK chapter of Colleges Against Cancer is one of only 200 in the country, and it was the first chapter to be established in Nebraska. The money raise by UNK Colleges Against Cancer helps fund local offices, services and research in Nebraska.