Pauls Valley, OK, Pauls Valley Democrat

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June 4, 2014

Kid relay with real meaning — The recently completed school year didn’t wrap up without a walk at a Pauls Valley elementary school playground with real meaning.

The walk by Jackson Elementary students was more like a relay, which was their version of the annual Relay For Life event coming up this weekend.

Held each year to raise money for the American Cancer Society and cancer research, this year’s big Relay is set to start at 7 p.m. Friday, June 6.

For the second straight year the Relay going all night long will center around the band shell in Pauls Valley’s Wacker Park.

“It’s like their own mini-Relay,” said Erin Creach, tourism director for the city of Pauls Valley, referring to the school kids and their event.

Creach was involved with the recent Relay Recess at the local school as part of the city’s support for the overall Relay For Life campaign.

The way it worked is trails were laid out on the school’s playground.

Walking those trails were first through third grade students at the school, much like participants in the big Relay walk laps for money pledged to the cancer-fighting campaign.

It was all part of an educational and fun program at the school designed to teach them more about the Relay For Life effort.

“We sent information to the kids informing them about cancer; offering them a kind of education on things like sun screen and lots more,” Creach said.

“There was also a fundraising aspect to it with each student given the opportunity to raise money for the Relay,” she said.

“This was all about giving back and an opportunity for the kids to be involved in something like the Relay Recess.

“It’s the kids learning about giving back.”

Led by Jackson Principal Mitzi Winters and a number of the school’s teachers, the kids took their turn walking the winding paths mapped out on the playground.

“I was excited teachers took such an active part in getting the kids involved in the Relay Recess,” Creach added.

This year’s big Relay in Pauls Valley will again involve a number of teams walking laps starting Friday night to raise money.

The walks will be on laid out trails at the local park, much like what the young students did at Jackson during their recent event.

As in the past the Relay will continue throughout the night before officially coming to an end at 7 a.m. the following morning.

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