Hudson -- With 24 teams and more than 210 participants, the Hudson Relay for Life on June 14 and 15 raised more than $93,000 for cancer research.

The event also engaged 75 survivors and caregivers in the festivities.

"The response was really good," said Skylar Blackwell, public relations and online chair for Hudson's Relay for Life event. "We had some new corporate teams this year, which was exciting. We had Wal-Mart of Streetsboro and we also had All State and those were both new teams that either hadn't participated or hadn't participated in a while. That was exciting."

Blackwell said that there are still donations coming in from the corporate teams.

There was a variety of music and entertainment that kept the walkers energized for the 18-hour event.

Other activities included a kid's-only carnival and Shop for a Cure, where different vendors were on-site. Teams did on-site fundraising, as well as donating a raffle basket for a live auction.

The most popular activity was the fireworks that followed the Luminaria ceremony, Blackwell said.

The Luminaria ceremony is a regular part of every Relay event. People were able to buy luminary bags in memory, honor or support of a courageous friend or family member that battled cancer.

The bags lined the track, and everybody was honored.

With the excess luminary bags, they spelled out "hope" in the stands, and during the ceremony spelled out "cure." It was Blackwell's favorite part of the event.

In tribute to the survivors, there was a dinner provided for them and their caregivers. The majority of the survivor dinner was catered by The Rusty Nail in Kent, where owner Stephen Fiebag is a survivor himself. He was able to do a speech before the survivor lap and was able to tell his story and why he wanted to get involved with the cause.

Other donations were from Nosh in Hudson, which provided desserts, and Buffalo Wild Wings in Streetsboro, which donated wings.

"We appreciate all the community support," said Blackwell. She hopes that people will also get involved year round.

The next event the group is doing is Bark for Life, which will be Aug. 24 at Hudson Springs' Park. Bark for Life honors the caregiving qualities of canine best friends. The event is $15 per dog, and $1 for each additional dog from the same household. For information, contact Liz Roche at


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