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Enthusiasm helps Relay raise #036;206,135.77

Messenger Intern

From an old, dirty couch that nobody wanted to golf tournaments to picnics, local Relay for Life teams applied their creative juices to raise $206,135 for the American Cancer Society.

These fundraising efforts topped last year’s total by about $37,000.

"We just had a determined group of teams that were very creative in their fundraising efforts. They were very dedicated to the cause, and they put all their effort forward.

"Even when they thought it was the end, they pushed a little harder," said Mary Williams, co-chairperson for the Relay for Life.

Williams also attributes this year’s total increase to the overall enthusiasm.

Children were also more involved than previous years in a new event called Children for Hope, where children paid $5 and were exposed to a petting zoo. They were also able to paint flowerpots for the moms on Mothers Day.

Park Memorial Methodist Church, which consisted of 39 members, was named Top Fundraiser Team for raising over $14,000 through a variety of fundraising techniques.

However, the majority of the monies came from contributions, according to team captain Hank Jones.

"[Relay] really makes you think about life and the things people are able to do. I think Relay underlines all the really good things in life," Jones said.

However, it is not only the contributions to cancer research that Jones holds in such high regards. It is also the fellowship opportunity that accompanies the occasion.

Jones said he considers the annual event to be a "church mission."

"Even if we only raised half the money, the fellowship opportunity could still be considered a success to me," Jones said.

The church team has already begun to work on fundraising plans for next year, but those plans are naturally a secret.

First United Methodist Church was named Top Per Capita Team.

Virginia Spurlock was named the Top Individual Fundraiser.

South Alabama Rural Health Association was named the Avis Synco Spirit of Relay Winner.

The following teams raised more than $10,000: Edge Regional Medical Center, First Baptist Church, First United Methodist Church, Park Memorial Methodist Church, SARHA, Troy City Schools and Gibson and Carden.

In all 59 teams participated: Alabama Department of Transportation, Banks School, Beta Sigma Phi of Goshen, Brooke’s Beauty Salon, Brundidge United Methodist Church, Burger King, Bush Memorial Baptist Church, Byrd Drug Store, City of Troy, Collegedale Church of Christ, Colonial Bank, Ebony Club, Edge Regional Medical Center, Family Eye Center, First Baptist Church of Troy, First United Methodist Church of Troy, Food World, Garrett’s IGA Troy and Brundidge, Gibson and Carden, PC., Goody’s, Goshen Schools, Hairworks, Hamilton Crossroads Church of Christ, Hepzibah Baptist Church, Lockheed Martin, NACCU, Noble Manor, Oak Grove United Methodist Church, Old Lebanon Baptist Church, Park Memorial Methodist Church, Pike County Cattlemen/Cattlewomen, Pike County Courthouse, Pike County High School, Pro Marketing/Beeline, Regions Bank, Signature Hair Designs, Southeast Alabama Rural Health Association, South Alabama Electric Cooperative, South Trust Bank, Springhill Baptist Church, St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, The Studio Betsy Colquett, Tri-Omega, Troy Bank & Trust Company, Troy Cablevision, Sikorsky, Support Services, Troy City Schools, Troy Junior Women’s League, The Messenger, Troy School of Dance, Troy State University, Wal-Mart, Wayne Farms, Williams Chapel, Wiregrass Hospice, Douglas Brothers and Troy Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors.