6 October 2022

Wagga's Relay for Life to go ahead indoors

| Chris Roe
Start the conversation
Man and bear

Wagga Wagga Relay For Life chairperson Alan Pottie (right) hopes the community gets behind the modified event. Photo: WWRFL.

With the deluge of rain predicted for Friday, the Wagga Wagga Relay for Life committee has decided to push on with an indoor event at Wagga’s Equex Centre.

The 24-hour fundraising event had been scheduled to begin on Friday night at Conolly Park with a family festival running through Saturday.

However, with 100mm of rain predicted this week, the committee made the decision to modify the event.

“After an onsite meeting, we have decided the original outdoor camping format at Conolly Park would not be safe or provide the usual enjoyable experience for participants,” Wagga Wagga Relay for Life chairperson Alan Pottie said.

It’s been three years since the last face-to-face event was held and Mr Pottie said that they felt it was important to do something despite the severe weather warnings.

“As Wagga’s biggest annual cancer fundraiser, we are still really keen to hold a modified event to ensure the ‘Remember, Celebrate and Fightback’ message is not lost for 2022,” he explained.

“Thanks to wonderful co-operation from Wagga Wagga City Council, the event will be held at Wagga Equex Centre over a shortened period this Saturday.”

READ ALSO At just 13, Sascha has hats and fashion on her mind

The Relay For Life began in the United States in 1985 when Dr Gordy Klatt spent a gruelling 24 hours marching around a track in Washington to raise awareness of cancer and generate funds.

The Wagga Wagga Relay for Life was first held in 2002 and over the past two decades has grown to become a fixture on the annual event calendar as locals team up, raise money and take turns around the track over the 24 hours.

Mr Pottie is a cancer survivor himself and said the event is a great way to bring together a broad spectrum of people who have been touched by the disease.

“There’s that real sense of community out there and a common bond between celebrating survivorship, remembering those that we’ve lost through these journeys, and in fighting back by creating awareness and fundraising,” he said.

“Regardless of who you are or your background, there is a real sense that we can get through this and we can support each other.”

READ ALSO From Wagga to India and back for Fusion Botanical

While this year’s relay will be scaled back, organisers are encouraging the community to get behind the indoor event at the Wagga Equex Centre where there is plenty of seating and space to walk laps out of the rain.

Rather than running overnight, the event will take place on Saturday 8 October between 9 am and 4 pm.

Along with the relay, there will be a survivor’s morning tea, activities and games and the day will conclude with the emotional ‘Hope Ceremony’ before a final lap and the official closing.

“It allows people to reflect on what their journey is and it helps them just sit back and think where they’re at, because cancer does make you reassess your life in a lot of ways,” Mr Pottie said.

“The thing we do is, celebrate, remember and fight back. These are the three pillars which are really important.”

For more information and to check the latest details follow the Wagga Wagga Relay For Life Facebook page here.

Start the conversation

Daily Digest

Want the best Riverina news delivered daily? Every day we package the most popular Riverina stories and send them straight to your inbox. Sign-up now for trusted local news that will never be behind a paywall.

By submitting your email address you are agreeing to Region Group's terms and conditions and privacy policy.