Get ready to relay!!

Boundary Relay for Life is coming up on June 7 at James Donaldson Park.

Trish Horz will be donating her hair to the Canadian Cancer Society.

It’s pretty clear to say that cancer has or will touch everyone’s lives at some point. For most of us, though, it’s easy to forget the struggles unless you are battling it or a close friend or family member is.Relay For Life is one of those events that everyone knows about and that brings together different people from different walks of life for a common goal: to rid the world of cancer.This year’s relay in Grand Forks takes place on June 7 at James Donaldson Park and goes from 10 a.m. until 10 p.m.People contribute different ways. Many join teams and participate (you still can), while many sponsor their friends or family members, while other brave souls shave their heads on stage.“We’re looking to raise money for the Canadian Cancer Society and the many programs they offer,” said Jennifer Edwards, chair of this year’s relay. “We have 12 teams confirmed and around 120 people so far. We have a couple of other teams that haven’t registered yet but we expect them to do so.”Edwards said that teams can fundraiser together and pool their money, or the individuals can fundraise towards their team or themselves.“A lot of teams will do bake sales or car washes or a silent auction,” she said. “They’ll do team fundraisers or individuals could ask their friends and co-workers to sponsor them.”Edwards said each team must have one member of the track at a time. “It’s nice because people can walk the track when it fits their schedule,” she said. “Generally, a lot of the team will come together and walk the track together.”The Boundary Relay For Life will start off with the celebrate ceremony and the survivor lap. At the end of the evening, participants will line the track and light up the luminaries. “We also have a fight back ceremony,” said Edwards. “We look at the ways we can fight back against cancer. We usually do some type of smashing event.”Edwards said there will be plenty of local musicians playing on the main stage during the relay.Last year, the Boundary relay raised $50,000 which was the most ever, said Edwards.Anyone wanting more information or looking to donate to a team or an individual can go to Boundary Relay for Life also has a Facebook page.Head shavingAt this year’s Boundary Relay For Life, there are three people to date who have committed to shaving their heads on stage to raise money and awareness for the fight against cancer.All have different reasons and varying lengths of hair.Trish Horz has been growing her hair since the last time she shaved her head for Relay For Life back in 2010. She plans to donate her cut hair to the cancer society to make wigs.Horz got involved the first time around after growing her hair long after being injured in 2001.“Someone said if I had short hair maybe my luck would be better,” she said. “I knew when I turned 50 I needed a push to cut my hair because it was almost at my butt.”She also wanted to learn computers, so she spent a great deal of time making fund-raising posters.“…then I wouldn’t jam out,” she said. “It also goes to a good cause—to make wigs.”Horz said that she has had cancer in her family but she wanted to make the fundraising effort a fun thing.Since she can’t physically do the relay Horz likes to volunteer at the end, in addition to getting her head shaved.“This has become a community event,” she said. “I get so many people telling me how long my hair is.”Jerome MacDonald reasons for shaving his head for the cancer society is personal. “So many people I know have had cancer,” he said. “I lost four brothers to cancer. I have a neighbour who has lung cancer.”MacDonald said he would like to make whatever difference he can and raising money through shaving his head is the best way he knows.Five years ago he shaved his head for cancer at the Grand Forks Hotel.Also shaving her head is Lynn Whyte, who leads all relay participants in money raised so far with a whopping $1,495.As a cancer survivor, Whyte knows first-hand the benefits of the cancer society. She participates in the relay every year but this is the first time she has shaved her head.“I knew with my family and friends—it would help to raise funds,” said Whyte. “I’ve been dealing with cancer myself since 2003. I just wanted to raise more awareness and more funds.”Whyte said she has a sister-in-law who has terminal lung cancer. “Until you have cancer yourself you don’t realize how many people have cancer,” she said. “It’s amazing.”Whyte is really looking forward to the relay and having her locks shorn.“I’m extremely excited,” she said. “As it gets closer I can’t wait.”