It's Kick-Off Time for the annual Relay For Life of Palmerton and surrounding communities.

Relay For Life is the nation's largest overnight, 24-hour, non-profit walk event. This Year's Relay marks the 9th year at Palmerton. The formal Kickoff meeting will be held on Thursday, Nov. 12, 2009 at 6 p.m. in the Palmerton High School Cafeteria, located at 3525 Fireline Road, Palmerton.

For the third year running, this local event qualified for "Pacesetter" status in 2009 – only 59 of 221 Relays in Pennsylvania met the qualifications to earn this special distinction

All Relayers, survivors, and caregivers are encouraged to attend. The goal is for every Relayer to bring a friend and introduce them to Relay. There are lots of ways to get involved. The public is invited to enjoy some free food and fun while learning about how they can be a part of this local community Relay For Life event.

Specifics of this year's Relay will be discussed including the unveiling of this year's theme. A short celebration of survivors will be held, and a special ceremony will remember those lost to cancer. The Advocacy/Mission Committee will present some tips on how to fight back against this disease. Entertainment will include a few games and door prize drawings. Light refreshments will be on tap as well. Teams are invited to promote fundraisers and to sell items before and after the meeting.

Relay For Life is much more than a fundraiser. It is designed to involve the entire community in cancer education, increase awareness of the mission of the American Cancer Society and its advocacy efforts, and to help people learn about programs and services available to cancer patients, their caregivers and families. Relay For Life is a fun-filled overnight event intended to bring together people to celebrate, remember and fight back. The life-changing event brings more than 3.5 million people together annually to celebrate the lives of the survivors who have battled cancer and are winning the fight, to remember loved ones lost to the disease and to fight back by making a commitment to put an end to cancer. This year the American Cancer Society is imagining a world with more birthdays and finding a way to make it happen.

This year's Relay For Life at Palmerton will be held on May 22-May 23, 2010 from 10 a.m. to 10 a.m.

ACS Income Development Specialist Caylan Chanwik is new to the Palmerton area event. She shares her thoughts to all local participants: "Each and every Relay For Life participant and American Cancer Society volunteer makes a difference. I very much look forward to working with all of you, and I hope that you will help to make this year the most successful yet in the fight against cancer."