Woodlawn School students celebrated the end of school and helped raise money for a good cause at the same time Friday during the Fourth Annual Relay for Life event at the school.
Whether it was walking laps to remember a lost loved one, just having fun playing on the inflatables or participating in the many games, there were many activities to keep the school’s youth excited throughout the day. Meanwhile, the students were well within reach of raising their lofty target goal for the year.
“We’ve raised over $20,000 the last four years, but this year our goal was $10,000. I’m not sure we are going to reach it but we are still going to collect money if anybody in the community is interested in donating money for our team,” said Sharon McCombs, the Chairman of the Carroll/Galax Relay for Life team and the sponsor for the Woodlawn School Relay team. “We collect money all the way up until the countywide event in July and we will come close to our goal.”
Relay for Life has a special place in the hearts of many at Woodlawn School. Former principal Kathleen Barker lost a lengthy battle with cancer in recent years and many others at the school have been affected by the disease.
“We do Relay for Life here in memory and in honor of the people who have cancer or have passed away from cancer. We’ve had several of our members here at Woodlawn, Mrs. Barker for one, and several more of our teachers have had family members and parents with cancer,” McCombs said. “My husband passed away from cancer, so we have a big reason for it. We have students here that in the past and this year have had parents or aunts or uncles or grandparents who have had cancer and they do it in honor and memory of them.”
The school makes the event fun for students through a variety of ways. For one, it is held near the end of school so students are already in a celebratory mood. Fun events add to the jubilant environment.
“The kids are having a great time. We always do it one of the last days of the year. We have an event here at Woodlawn kind of simulating what the countywide relay event is about, encircling the track with different homerooms. We set up a canopy and blankets, and have the kids camp out and have them make walks around the track in order to keep the relay going,” McCombs said. “And then we have hot dogs, hamburgers, snow cones, and concessions. We had inflatables this year. We have a really good time and it’s something in the past we’ve been able to be very successful at, and we will be this year, too.”
All the concessions for Friday’s event were donated by the teachers and staff at Woodlawn, with all the proceeds going directly to Relay for Life. Relay for Life t-shirts are also available for purchase at the school for $15 at the main office. The Woodlawn Relay for Life team will continue to collect money until the big countywide event July 27 at Carroll County High School.