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October 25, 2012

Relay For Life plans kickoff event Nov. 7

The Cooperstown/Otsego County Relay for Life has announced details of this year’s event during the American Cancer Society’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month. 

In its 15th year, the event will return on May 17 and 18, at the Cooperstown Dreams Park, according to a media release from local organizers.

Thus far, the local relay has raised more than $1.25 million to help the American Cancer Society create a world with less cancer and more birthdays, the release stated. This year’s goal is $115,000, up from last year’s record-setting fundraising total of $112,000. The 2013 theme is Celebrating the Road of Progress.

This year the local event is celebrating its 15th anniversary and the American Cancer Society is celebrating its 100th anniversary. 

Having served as chairwoman for four years, Carla Eckler will be returning as co-chairwoman. Teri Sammis from Fly Creek will be joining Eckler as co-chairwoman. The leadership skills Sammis has gained experience during her 31-year career as a naval officer that will be invaluable to the continued success of the Cooperstown/Otsego County Relay for Life, the release said.

“I’m excited about the opportunity to participate in the efforts to eradicate cancer. This disease has touched so many lives, I want to be part of the solution,” Sammis said in the release.

Relay For Life is an overnight celebration of hope and survivorship held in more than 6,000 communities across the United States and 20 foreign countries. Pre-formed teams camp out and team members take turns walking a track throughout the night in honor of those who have fought cancer and in memory of those who have died. Teams do most of their fundraising before the event, but they also hold fundraisers at their campsite. Teams are now forming. Past team captains and those interested in forming a team for this year’s event are invited to attend Warm Up, Relay’s kick-off event scheduled from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 7, at the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

For more information on the Cooperstown/Otsego County Relay for Life, call Eckler at (315) 858-1451, Teri Sammis at 547-2949, Helen Gregory from the American Cancer Society in Sidney at 563-9634, or visit the website at

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