Many of you who have experienced the amazingness of Relay For Life Kilkenny may probably be wondering why on earth we have decided to change venue for this years Relay, hey?
So, here we’ll explain why.
As you know there is a little gang of us who volunteer to organise the event. We are constantly looking for ways in which we can improve the experience of Relay for everyone and at the same time boost the amount of money we raise for the Irish Cancer Society. After every Relay the organising team meet to review how the event has gone and to get our heads together about possible improvements. It is pretty hard to improve on Relay as it is so brilliant, but we really do think that the Rugby Club as our new venue will provide you with everything that you love about Relay and much, much more.
1. The move to the new venue will allow us to create more of a Relay village feel. So, at the Rugby Club we have the opportunity of having all of our team tents around the outside of the pitch facing in towards the centre where the Relay track will be. It will look something like this – from Relay For Life Wexford (do check out their Facebook page as they have some fabulous photos of their Relay village)
Having this set up will mean that whenever there is an announcement over the PA system, such as ‘Look at this fabulous person dressed as a pantomime horse Irish dancing round the track’, then everyone, no matter where you are will be able to see what’s going on. It will also reduce the sense of isolation that some of the team members have felt in the past at being off at one end of the field. We are also very conscious that those younger members of our teams that need to get some sleep through the night at the back of a tent need a close eye kept on them. With this village type of set up that close eye can still be kept whilst having the other eye on what’s going on in the middle of the field.
2. We have some AMAZINGLY talented musicians performing for us at Relay. The new venue will enable us to create a mini-festival type of atmosphere, with a higher level of engagement and interaction between the performers and the audience, which can only make it better for everyone. We will be announcing details of our line-up soon, so watch this space.
3. The Rugby Club is in a part of the town that isn’t a residential area. This means that we are able to plan more activities through the night which will help to keep energy and spirits high through those tough hours when we really should be tucked up in bed. Once we have finished the Candle of Hope Ceremony we can start our nocturnal programme. We will have the favourite themed laps, games, music, dancing and more. By keeping the energy up through the night we believe it will be easier for our Relayers, there won’t be that slump that we need to drag ourselves out of as dawn starts to break.
4. The Rugby Club is an ideal venue for Relay, having all the facilities we are used to. There is ample parking space, there are toilets and showers. We have the use of the clubhouse, with a fully equipped kitchen where we will provide our VIP’s with their reception meal and once they’ve done then we can provide a better ‘Hospitality Area’ for our Relayers. We will be better able to provide our Relayers with refreshments, goodies and even their breakfast rolls! We are also going to have a tuckshop onsite, everything will be very reasonably priced and all the money raised will go into the final kitty for the Irish Cancer Society. The only thing we won’t have is a track to walk on……but we will have grass, which is just as good.
5. You know that saying ‘a change is as good as a rest’, We’ve been Relaying since 2013 and there is something very familiar about the way we run our Relay. And that is not to say that there is anything wrong with the way we ran our Relay, after all we all loved it, but sometimes it is nice to shake things up a bit and do things a bit differently, and by partnering with Kilkenny Rugby Club we are also bringing in a different group of people with fresh eyes and ideas as to how we can make the whole Relay experience better.
6. The organising committee put a huge amount of effort into making sure our VIP survivors feel like royalty during the weekend of Relay. This does however mean that often we are running around in a frenzied panic on the Saturday morning trying to get everything organised. By moving to our new venue we are able to go into the clubhouse on the Friday before Relay and do a lot of the setting up. Remember, we are all volunteers and we all want to enjoy Relay, so anything that reduces the stress involved in the organising will enhance the experience for all of us.
7. Ultimately Relay For Life is a fundraising event for the Irish Cancer Society. We, the organising team have to be responsible when it comes to our budget for hosting the event. We have to maximise the amount of money that goes to the Irish Cancer Society through minimising the costs involved in running a Relay event. Wherever possible we try to get whatever we need for little or no cost via sponsorship (one of our most asked questions is ‘can we have it for free?’) and we are so lucky and thankful for all the support we get from local businesses who help us out, however there are some pretty big things that we do need to pay for (venue, electrician, tents) and year on year these costs have all risen. As a committee we felt that we couldn’t justify such a large spend in 2017 and so changing venue is one of the ways in which we are reducing our costs. This is so important to all of us, and we believe that it is also important to you.
8. Moving to a new venue is pushing us all out of our comfort zone, and it is ok to feel the discomfort. We acknowledge that discomfort, sure we’re all feeling it, so lets name it…and then lets make sure that we make Relay For Life Kilkenny 2017 GREAT!
In 2013 we ran Relay For Life Kilkenny for the first time. None of us knew what it was going to be like, we really didn’t have a clue. Thankfully, it was a massive success, and has been every year since. The vast majority of that is down to YOU, our Relayers, our VIP’s, our Supporters and the organising team. It really is the people that make a Relay, not the place, but we actually believe that by moving to the Rugby Club our 5th Relay is going to be the best one yet.
Have you registered yet? You can register as a VIP (if you ever had to hear the words ‘you have cancer’- contact Brenda Cooper (firstname.lastname@example.org) or you can register a team – contact Josephine Kelly (email@example.com) and you will get all the info you need, and we are always on the look out for volunteers to help out. Whatever you do, don’t miss out on Relay For Life Kilkenny 2017 pop your email in the box below and we’ll keep you informed of everything we have planned.