April 26, 2013 10:56:09 AM
Thousands of people are expected to descend on Columbus High School soccer field Friday night for the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life.
With sixty one teams participating in the event, numerous tents will be set up around the walking track selling everything from steak dinners and Frito chili pies to ice cream and cotton candy.
Local Relay chair Mott Ellis said she has been anxiously watching the weather forecast but expects the rain to hold off until Saturday.
"We've been watching it of course. There always a chance that (rain) happens but it looks like it will come in on Saturday," she said.
Teams can begin setting up at 9 a.m. on Friday with an opening ceremony kicking off the event at 6 p.m. A Survivor's walk, caretakers walk and parade of teams will follow with the night's activities beginning around 7 p.m.
"About seven everything gets going in full swing," Ellis said.
At 9 p.m., the luminary service will begin to pay tribute to those who have both survived cancer and lost their battles. Throughout the evening, Ellis encouraged people to walk around, visit booths and play games.
"It's a family event. You can come and buy your dinner there, you can walk the track, you can do games. I like to describe it as fellowship, fun and food."
As of Thursday evening, Ellis said the teams have raised $103,000. The goal for the Columbus Relay is $160,000.
"We've got a ways to go," Ellis said. "We're hoping that a lot is coming in tomorrow because we definitely want to meet our goal.
Sarah Fowler covered crime, education and community related events for The Dispatch.
2. Deputy shot, suspect dead after car chase COLUMBUS & LOWNDES COUNTY
3. Little: Aldermen 'overreach' in handling officer incident STARKVILLE & OKTIBBEHA COUNTY
4. Perception and reality: Downtown business owners grapple with fallout from shooting COLUMBUS & LOWNDES COUNTY