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Relay For Life Volunteers Hold Two-Day Fundraiser

Lake Forest Relay for Life volunteers are preparing for the October event, which raises money to fight cancer.

Organizers of the upcoming Lake Forest Relay for Life hosted a Labor Day weekend fundraiser at Walmart in Foothill Ranch.

The annual overnight event—this year taking place Oct. 6 and Oct. 7 at —raises money for the American Cancer Society.

Volunteers outside Walmart on Saturday and Sunday sold hot dogs, homemade chili, snacks and drinks, and talked with customers about the upcoming Relay.

The Rainbow Girls, a youth service group, lent a hand Saturday, setting up the fundraising booth and distributing information.

Relay events, which take place globally each year, are dedicated to raising awareness and money in the fight against cancer. 

"We hope to make a minimum of $40,000 and hope to have 60 new survivors that we are able to provide and honor and celebrate," said Cheryl Bartetzko, who heads up Orange County's Relay volunteers.

"It's just a good cause," said Patricia Muratori, 52, of Lake Forest, one of those who donated to the fundraiser Sunday.

"There's not enough money for research. The purpose and the reason is a good drive, and it's one that people aren't aware of," Muratori said. "The more you get people involved and understanding, the better."

Muratori had a personal connection to the disease: her daughter was once diagnosed with cancer, she said.

"Although my daughter is cured, others could use the help," she said. Muratori plans to attend this year's Relay for Life in Lake Forest.

Walmart employee Janet Schneider, 53, of Corona, also donated to the fundraiser.

"They could always use more money for research for cancer," Schneider said. "It [cancer] can happen at any time. It's better to donate now than wait until after the fact."

"We celebrate, we remember, and we fight back," Bartetzko said Sunday.

A nighttime Luminaria ceremony at the Relay in October will honor cancer survivors and recall those lost to cancer.

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