Estevan will host a Relay for Life in 2014.
There had been speculation about whether the event would happen in Estevan this year, ever since the first planning meeting three months ago only attracted five people. Adding to the concern was Weyburn's decision not to host a relay this year.
But a planning meeting for Estevan's relay on February 20 had a better turnout than the get-together three months ago, and local organizers have found an event chair: Elva Iwanchuk, who moved to Estevan in September of 2013, and has extensive experience with the Relay for Life.
Iwanchuk brought the relay to Swan River, Manitoba, a few years ago, and chaired the event's steering committee from 2010 to 2013.
"I enjoyed it, and it's something that I believe in," Iwanchuk told Lifestyles. "It's good support for our cancer survivors."
Iwanchuk was introduced to the Relay for Life through her sister, who is a cancer survivor. Iwanchuk joined her sister for a relay in Roblin, Manitoba – about 120 kilometres south of Swan Valley – in 2009, and Iwanchuk was hooked.
"I enjoy being with the other people and being with survivors, celebrating what is hopefully the (successful) end of their cancer fight, and raising money for the research, so that we have more survivors," said Iwanchuk.
Estevan's Relay for Life will happen June 14 and 15 at the Civic Auditorium. Organizers plan to have a split indoor and outdoor track this year.
They have set a goal of 12 teams, and they want to raise $80,000. Iwanchuk is optimistic that Estevan's relay will attract some Weyburn teams.
Organizers hope that there will be a large contingent of survivors at the relay, and that relay participants will sell a lot of luminaries. The luminaries line both sides of the relay's track.
Volunteers are needed for the event.
Estevan's relay still needs chairs for several committees, including luminaries, volunteers, sponsorships, entertainment, food services, marketing and communications, and the Fight Back committee.
Proceeds from the Relay for Life will be directed towards the Canadian Cancer Society.