Buffalo Island's fourth Relay for Life successful

Wednesday, September 14, 2005
Cancer survivors were recognized at the Buffalo Island Relay for Life. They kicked off the night of events by taking the first lap around the track.

The fourth annual Buffalo Island American Cancer Relay for Life was held Friday. The all night event, held at the Leachville City Park, is the grand finale of several months of work, fundraisers, and planning.

Throughout the campaign individual teams sponsored events including golf tournaments, bake sales, poker runs, raffles, road blocks, singings, barbecues, shows, wresting matches, pancake breakfasts, fried pie sales and much more. Area towns, organizations, businesses and individuals also served as sponsors.

"We appreciate each one that took part to make this year's Relay successful," Shelia Spurlock, chairman, said.

This year's theme was mardi gras, "Fighting Cancer One step at a Time." Teams created a festive atmosphere in decorating their booths. Guests had a wide selection of food items including beans and cornbread, jambalaya, hot dogs, cakes, pies, funnel cakes, chili, barbecue, and even fried bologna sandwiches.

Cancer survivors were recognized during the survivor ceremony led by Jennie Fleeman, survivor chairman. The 2005 honorary survivors were Shirley Roe, Tyler Henderson, Janice Edgin and Jennie Fleeman. A moment of silence in memory of Kirlen Bates of Manila was held. Mrs. Bates was chosen as an honorary survivor and lost her battle to cancer in June.

"Finding a cure is what it is all about," Fleeman said.

Matheny lit a candle, "the flame of hope," before the survivors made the first lap around the track. They were joined by family and friends for the second time around the track.

Entertainment at the bandstand included the bands Trial and Error and Rockers Dog. D.J. music was provided.

A luminary ceremony was held and names in honor of survivors and in memory of those that have lost their battle were read by David Lawrence, Russell Rhodes, Mark wheeler and Steve McGuire.

Among the booths on site were Heritage Bank, Farmers Market, Classic Hot Rodders and Cruisers, New Harmony Baptist Church, Second Baptist Church, Manila First United Methodist Church, Southern Bank of Commerce, Nifty Fifties, Leachville police and fire departments and first responders, Medic One, Leachville Church of Christ, Wessman Family, Leachville Assembly of God, and the Kiss a Pig tent.

Brenda Matheny "won" the kiss a pig contest and bravely kissed the pig.

Winning first, second and third place in the campsites were: Leachville Police Department, Fire Department and First Responders, first place; Southern Bank of Commerce, second place; and Classic Rodders, third place.

The Spirit Stick winners were Farmers Market, first place; New Harmony Baptist Church Jubilees, second place; and Southern Bank of Commerce, third place.

Spurlock said it was a great night and she appreciated everyone for supporting the cause.

"It is a joint effort with communities, organizations and individuals across Buffalo Island working together," Spurlock said.

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