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Autumne Baker, community representative of the ACS’s Great Lakes Division, left, talks to team captains at the 2013 Crawford County Relay For Life kickoff Thursday evening, while Angela Crecelius, chair of this year’s event, listens. Photo by Chris Adams

Crawford RFL survivor activities top in Great Lakes Division

January 16, 2013
Planning for the 2013 Crawford County Relay For Life fundraiser for the American Cancer Society started with some good news about the 2012 event.

Autumne Baker, community representative of the ACS's Great Lakes Division, announced at the 2013 kickoff event Thursday night at the Crawford County 4-H Community Park that the 2012 RFL won the Survivor Award for the division.

The Crawford County RFL received the award, she explained, for having the best survivor activities throughout Indiana and Michigan. Nationally, it received honorable mention, meaning it was recognized as the second best in the country, Baker said.

Angela Crecelius, who is the chair of the 2013 RFL, accepted the award on behalf of Crawford County at the ACS conference.

"I was never so proud in my entire life to go up and get that award," she said.

The 2012 Crawford County RFL also received the All-American Award, Baker said. The honor is given to Relays based on various criteria, including teams, survivors and money raised, she said.

"It's not competitive, but nation-wide less than 1 percent (of the 2012 Relays) won that," she said.

Baker also recognized several teams for reaching various monetary milestone at last year's Relay, which raised $48,000.

Platinum-level teams (those that raised at least $7,500) were Can Rem Su and Moms on a Mission; gold-level teams ($5,000) were Hillview and Rocky's Relayers; bronze-level teams ($2,500) were Jericho Ridge Runners and Rita's Ramblers; and Rising Star teams ($1,000) were Lincoln Hills, Healbillies and Patoka Elementary School.

Turning the attention toward the 2013 Relay, Baker said the theme of this year's event, which will be Friday and Saturday, June 21 and 22, at the 4-H Community Park, will be "Lights, Camera, Act For a Cure!"

The TV and film motif already was in full swing as Baker presented the survivors present with miniature replica Academy Awards statues. She also recognized caregivers, which, by Baker's definition, included everyone present, as they all have helped cancer patients in some way, either directly or indirectly.

"Our goal is $50,000 (net) this year, and we want to have 20 teams," Crecelius said, noting last year's RFL had 18 teams.

To help reach that dollar figure, the Relay will team up with the Crawford County Junior-Senior High School boys' basketball program for a Coaches vs. Cancer game on Feb. 2. RFL teams will have various items for sale, and survivors will be honored.

As in past years, the committee and team captains will meet monthly up to the Relay. Meetings, which will be from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the 4-H Community Park, will be on Thursdays, Feb. 7, March 14, April 11, May 16 and June 6.

Baker said that she hopes to get 40 ACS CAN (Cancer Action Network) members signed up at the February meeting. To become an ACS CAN member, persons must bring a $10 minimum gift, $20 to receive a keychain.

In addition, the Crawford County RFL has a website — www.relayforlife.org/crawfordcountyin — that will list upcoming events, including team fundraisers. Baker also encouraged the community to join the Relay's Facebook page at facebook.com/pages/Relay-For-Life-of-Crawford-County-Indiana.

Baker said this is a special year for the American Cancer Society, which refers to itself as the "official sponsor of birthdays." In May, the ACS will celebrate its 100th anniversary, she said.

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