Since 2008, Langton's elementary school Relay for Life has raised more than $52,000 for the Canadian Cancer Society. On Friday, May 6th, students from Sacred Heart Catholic School and Langton Public School – with donations collected in the community – will add to that total.
"The difference is Pierre's not here," said Sacred Heart principal Dan Pace at a recent Sacred Heart staff meeting. "The shoes are big to fill, and we know that, but we're pretty encouraged that we're going to do a great job for a good cause."
Organization of the fifth elementary school Relay for Life has changed hands. Pierre Chasse and Erica DeSerranno have passed the 'relay baton' to a new group of teachers and principals, but the basic format stays the same.
Cancer survivors will gather with students from both schools on May 6th at 9:15 a.m. behind the Langton Arena for opening ceremonies. Chasse – a cancer survivor – will be the guest speaker. A Survivor Lap follows with students surrounding the track to support the Survivors. Throughout the day students from both schools will continue to walk the track in shifts until closing ceremonies in the afternoon.
In case of inclement weather, they can use the arena to walk laps.
"That's our Plan B," said Pace, hoping the tradition of excellent weather continues.
It's very important to have survivors, he added, encouraging anyone who would like to participate on May 6th to contact Sacred Heart School at 519-875-2556.
A barbecue, sponsored by M&M Meat Shops - Tillsonburg, will be available for students (by pre-order) and is open to anyone in the community to help raise Relay for Life funds.
Freezies will also be for sale ($1) at the Relay.
Luminaries are available at Sacred Heart School, which can be purchased by students and the community in advance, to be set up in the Sacred Heart gymnasium on the 6th.
Pledge envelopes went home Monday.
"We sent them home one per family, with the youngest in the family," said Heather Vanacker, a member of the organizing committee with Pace, Karen Nunn and Linda Kovacs, and Langton Public School's Cole Schaeffer and Tracey Reese.
One thing that will change this year, said Pace, is Chasse's hair-cutting incentive. Chasse, who set goals of $10,000 each year, had promised students he would shave his head if they met the target. He even went as far as wearing a women's dress one year, and perhaps even more 'distasteful' to a diehard Habs fan, a Toronto Maple Leafs jersey and cap.
After some discussion as to 'who' might do 'what,' the organizing committee came up with a few ideas. But those plans, and their 2016 goal, will be kept under their dyed hair for now.