Petting zoo

Members of the local 4-H Club will once again host a petting zoo at this year's Relay For Life. 

The West Baton Rouge Relay For Life is set for Friday, Apr. 3, but the event is still in need of a team leader, volunteers to help with the event and teams to participate.

The event will be held on the track at Brusly High School and serves as a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society.

“We need people to get registered, to get involved and to sign up to assist with the event or to join a team,” said Carley Dolezal, the community development manager for the parish. 

“We also need new event leadership committee members—they’re the ones that help plan the event and help put it all together,” she continued. “Ideally, they would be four really motivated and active people.”

“We’re just looking for a few strong leaders to help plan the event, recruit teams and help us publicize the event,” Dolezal said.

Normally, the West Baton Rouge Relay For Life has about 25 teams, each with their own fundraising mechanism, like food sales or activities.

“We usually have a ton of people out there,” Dolezal said. “It’s really fun.”

Prior to the Relay itself, a dinner is held at the Addis Community Center with celebrity waiters, people well known in the community.

“It really brings in the most revenue,” she said, adding about $7,000 has already been collected. Last year, the celebrity waiter event raised $65,000 of the $115,000 total for last year’s Relay For Life.

While the celebrity waiter event brings in the majority of the donations, seating is limited at the Community Center so participation is likewise limited, Dolezal said.

“The actual Relay For Life, even though it may not raise as much money as the celebrity waiter event, is more of a community event,” she said. “I think people enjoy participating in it because they really understand the purpose.”

And while much of the funds raised go to the American Cancer Society for research, “we do much more,” Dolezal said, services that keep those funds local.

The Baton Rouge area American Cancer Society has a “Road to Recovery” program to provide transportation to and from treatments for cancer patients and it also has partnered with nearly 10 area hotels where patients from out of town can stay for free to accommodate treatments.

“We do a lot of things besides just research,” Dolezal said.

For more information, or to get involved, contact Dolezal at (225) 927-0782.

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