Cancer survivors and their family do a lap of honour of the
Forsyth Barr Stadium to begin the Relay for Life on
Saturday. Photo by Gerard O'Brien.
The Forsyth Barr Stadium proved a ''superb'' venue for
Dunedin's latest Relay for Life event at the weekend, and about
$200,000 has already been raised for the Cancer Society,
Society Otago-Southland divisional chief executive Mike
Kernaghan said the biennial event had previously been held at
the Caledonian Ground, where it had been called off at
midnight four years ago because of bad weather.
A total of 108 teams - up from 102 two years ago - comprising
up to 2000 participants had taken part in the latest 24-hour
relay, which began at noon on Saturday.
Given that more money was coming in, fundraising could come
close to the $230,000 raised in the previous Dunedin event,
much of this to be devoted to cancer research.
Participants had responded positively to the stadium venue,
Mr Kernaghan said.
The new venue offered more comfort, without the rain, wind
and heavy dew which had proved uncomfortable when the relay
was being undertaken outdoors, without protection from the
And stadium organisers had also been very helpful.
Other key advantages included having modern toilet facilities
readily available, and large screens which could be used to
display large images of musicians while they were performing,
and to show pre-recorded video clips from other relay groups
elsewhere in the country.
Relay for Life's slogan - ''Celebrate. Remember. Fight
Back''- had been powerfully reflected throughout the Dunedin
event, including a ''poignant'' candlelit remembrance at 9pm
Members of the family of the late Hannah Hiku (nee Brinsdon)
travelled from throughout the country to take part in the
relay, to celebrate her memory, as ''Team Hannah'', also
attending a memorial event for her yesterday.
Among the relay's side attractions was the
''Newspaper Wearable Arts'' event, backed by Allied Press
Ltd, publishers of the Otago Daily Times and
Star community newspaper.
One of the relay's masters of ceremonies, Nicky Rennie, and
Mr Kernaghan judged the arts show yesterday morning, awarding
first place to an impressive tutu ballet outfit. Other
entries included a huge sombrero, a Madonna outfit, a Roman
centurion and an ensemble designed to turn heads at the
Otago-Southland divisional events manager Tammy Jackman said
organisers were ''absolutely delighted'' with the success of
the first Wearable Arts event at the Dunedin relay.
And stadium organisers had provided a ''really fantastic