Can't rain on their Relay

RAIN might have dampened the Queanbeyan Relay for Life track but it certainly didn't affect the spirits of those who participated in the 24 hour event.

Queanbeyan Relay for Life organiser Linda Staples said the Queanbeyan community ploughed on despite receiving almost non-stop rain over the weekend.

Although the theme was "Life's a Beach", participants donned ponchos, raincoats and gumboots to combat the wet conditions.

"The beauty of the Queanbeyan community is that they're resilient. They don't give up and they just keep on moving," she said.

"The rain was a dampener on the event but it didn't dampen their spirits. It's just a bit of water."

A total of 35 teams and 353 people registered for the third annual Relay for Life. More than $87,000 has been raised so far.

"Our goal was $90,000 and I'm confident that we'll get that and more," Mrs Staples said.

"I'm always optimistic that we'll reach that target and maybe even surpass it."

Mrs Staples it was just "awe-inspiring" to watch as four participants had their head shaved on the weekend. She said that everyone who participated had a story to share.

"Each person is on their own journey. Some people have suffered from some form of cancer while others have lost a family or friend to it. Some just want to show their support," she said.

"It's a very individual thing."

Queanbeyan man Jason McDonald pledged to walk the Relay for Life on his own and has raised more than $5000 in the process.

He committed to shaving his head if he raised $2500 and his beard once his reached $4000 - an amount he did not think was possible.

Mr McDonald said despite being a one-man team, he had plenty of support from the other participants as well as family and friends who travelled from as far as Sydney to walk alongside him.

"There was rarely a time I was alone. If there wasn't support from my people - Helen and Corey, there was support from other teams," he said.

"Quite often people would slow down and do a lap with me, keep me company."

Mr McDonald said the Relay for Life was as much about the physical challenge as the emotional journey. He said the Hope Ceremony in particular drove home the real reason for the Relay for Life. During this time candles are lit to remember those who had lost their fight to cancer and honour those still battling the disease.

"It got a little bit real for me then. I sent out a message asking people if they would like me to light a candle on their behalf and I received about a dozen messages," he said.

"It was then that you realise just how many people you walk for."

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