By: Staff Writer Megan Ren
MSJ’s second annual Relay for Life (RFL) kicked off on a bright Saturday morning with an opening ceremony filled with speeches, music, and performances. Participants danced to the upbeat music that blasted from the DJ booth until RFL entertainment chair Sophomore Shivam Parikh commenced the 24-hour event with Boy Scout Troop 111 raising the American flag and Fremont flag in a color guard ceremony. He then led audience members in the Pledge of Allegiance, and Junior Aaron Chi from MSJ Chorale followed with a beautiful rendition of the “Star Spangled Banner”. Sophomore Grace Dong drew cheers from the crowd with an entertaining dance piece.
After the stage performances ended with two short speeches from Sophomore Karen Trinh, a cancer survivor, and RFL Event Chair Senior Sid Ambulkar, participants lined the track to cheer on cancer survivors as they took the honorary first “survivor lap.” More people then took to the track in the subsequent “caregiver” and “opening” laps. In the “Piggy Back Lap” at 11:30, many people began their “relay” in pairs.
By this morning, MSJ RFL had collected nearly $35,000 for the American Cancer Society. Regarding goals for the day, Event Chair Sid Ambulkar said, “We want to see a lot of fightback activities, small projects designed to educate people about cancer, from all the teams and we want to promote raising awareness… We want to make this a really fun event and have everyone involved.”
Photos: Staff Writer Kevin Chen and Staff Writer Megan Ren