Relay for Life of the Woodburn Area event will also feature Taste of Relay dinner

Local organizers are re-laying the groundwork for Relay for Life, and they hope the public will support the transformation this Saturday.

June 30 is the Relay for Life of Woodburn event, which is no longer a relay-style event, but instead features a scavenger hunt around the city.

Team registration, which is now free, begins at 9 a.m. at Legacy Woodburn Health Center. The only requirement for a team is that it must have at least one adult. Teams will be given a map and at least 70 destinations to find. Participants will take photos at these destinations throughout Woodburn where that they'll post to social media to score points.

Points won't be tallied until July 3, so teams can continue their hunting beyond Saturday.

Teams — and anyone from the public— should return to Woodburn Health Center by 5 p.m. for the Taste of Relay dinner, another departure from the traditional Relay for Life events of years past. Taste of Relay will be set up like a food court or buffet, with various local merchants offering samples with the purchase of a dinner ticket.

Pay $20 for 11 sample tickets, or $2 each, to sample fare from Orchards Grill, Sinable Sweets, Loco Ono, El Agave, Panera Bread, Chu's Eatery, Don Pan and Wooden Shoe Vineyards.

During that time, guests can look at and bid on several raffle and silent auction items.

The program will begin at 7:30 p.m., with the honoring of survivors and caregivers. The survivor lap, traditionally having been done on a track, will be done in the indoor atrium at Woodburn Health Center.

Will and Sharla Robertson, pastors at Woodburn Fellowship Church of the Nazarene, will then speak, talking about their experiences with cancer.

The event will close with the luminaria ceremony, in which a slideshow depicting all the names of participants' loved ones who have battled cancer will be presented, followed by a last lap around the atrium, which will be lined with paper bags decorated in honor of those cancer victims.

"It gets to me to see Rhonda's bag, and our son, and our niece who's on her fourth bout of cancer," Relay co-chair Don Judson said about his family members touched by cancer, including wife and co-chair Rhonda, who has been cancer free since 2000. "So I amble through, I don't hurry because, oh my gosh, it brings back a lot of memories."

While this year's Relay event is certainly non-traditional, the Judsons hope it's enough to keep people supporting a worthy cause, the American Cancer Society.

"This is a transition year, so our goal was to keep it going," Don Judson said. "You can't keep doing the same thing over and over again. We set the groundwork so whoever runs it next year can take it and run with it."

With a goal of $61,000, the Relay teams have already raised $45,000 as of press time, plus there are far more sponsors than before.

"We couldn't do it without all the people who donate so much to us," Don Judson said. "That's one of the unique things about Woodburn. We have $20,000 in in-kind donations. While that doesn't count toward the total, without these great businesses, we wouldn't be able to put it on. It's incredible."

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