Luminary at 2021 Rice County Relay in Faribault. Photo by Gordy Kosfeld
Luminary at 2021 Rice County Relay in Faribault. Photo by Gordy Kosfeld

The Rice County Relay for Life to benefit the American Cancer Society is having it's 30th event Friday, August 5, 2022.

The event begins 6:00 p.m. and goes until Midnight with an Opening Ceremony presentation by Jayne Spooner, daughter of the Relay's first Honorary Chair Cancer Survivor Leona Bastyr.

Lori Jo Markman, a past Honorary Chair Cancer Survivor will also speak with all past Honorary Chair Cancer Survivors being honored.  Sadly many of them are no longer with us although I do feel they will be joining us in spirit.

During the Luminaria Lighting Service the Holz family will speak.  They have suffered multiple heartaches caused by fighting the disease.

There is a American Red Cross Blood Drive from 4:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. we would love to fill because it is a great need for those undergoing cancer treatments.

A Survivor Cake and Coffee Reception takes place in the Beer Garden between 5:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m.

If you have not yet purchased a Luminary in memory or honor or celebration of someone they will be sold under the Grandstand from 5:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m.

Rice County Relay 2019 Luminary. Photo by Gordy Kosfeld
Rice County Relay 2019 Luminary. Photo by Gordy Kosfeld

The Relay for Life Committee sells food in the Beer Garden between 5:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m.  (with a break at 8:30 p.m. for Luminaria Service) featuring Nerstrand Meats Hot Dogs from the grill.

5 to 9:00 p.m. Arna Farmer's Catering and Cakes will be in their booth.

A terrific Silent Auction takes place between 5:00 p.m. and 9:45 p.m. (Please stick around to pick up your items)

The Kona Ice Truck will be at the event beginning 6:00 p.m.

Lisa Quimby will sing the National Anthem during the Opening Ceremony which starts 6:00 p.m.

We would love to have all cancer survivors participate in the Survivor Lap.  Register at the BA Booth before you attend the reception or participate in the Survivor Lap.

6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. the Rice County Historical Society Holy Innocents Episcopal Church will be open for reflection.  The church was originally located in Cannon City about 7 miles northeast of Faribault.  Cannon City families built it in 1869 and in 1871 it was consecrated by Bishop Whipple.  The church was moved to it's current location in 1959 and was opened for viewing in 1971.

Bingo is being played in the Beer Garden from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Luminaria Lighting Service is 8:30 p.m. with Pastor Kira Anderson providing the Invocation and Steve Bonde playing


9:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. Joe and the Mechanics will have musical entertainment with the Silent Auction closing in three sections (9:15 p.m. 9:30 p.m. 9:45 p.m.)

Midnight clean up will take place and the Relay for Life Committee would appreciate a number of volunteers to assist.

The Committtee could also use some volunteers to help set up in the morning.  Just stop down to the fairgrounds in Faribault.

There are 11 teams participating in this year's Rice County Relay for Life,

The event started as the Straight River Stroll in 1993 with 8 teams raising over $8,000.  285 Luminaries were purchased.

Peak year 200, $132,166.92 was raised with 36 teams.  The top year for teams participating was 2002 with 40.

There were multiple years with over $100,000 raised.

Going into the 2022 Rice County Relay for Life event approximately $2,512,456.84 has been raised.

Each year I did offer to kick in the cents needed to get to the next even dollar amount but the RFL Committee never said okay.

Corporate Sponsors for the 2022 event include:

  • Allina Health
  • Harry Brown's Family Automotive Faribault
  • Parker Kohl Funeral Home and Crematory
  • KDHL and POWER 96 Radio Faribault
  • First United Bank Faribault
  • Faribault Daily News
  • Donahue's Greenhouse Faribault
  • State Bank of Faribault
  • Boldt Funeral Home Faribault
  • Fette Electronics Faribault
  • JOD CPA's

Other sponsors include Reliance Bank of Faribault, Gather on Central Faribault, Northfield Dairy Queen, VM Engineering and Associates Faribault, Andreas Agency Faribault, Jennie-O Turkey Store, Varley Construction Faribault, Comprehensive Wealth Solutions Faribault, Shattuck-St. Mary's Faribault, Legacy House eXp Realty

Star Sports and Apparel of Faribault is the Survivor Sponsor.

Here is a listing of the past Honorary Chairs.  KDHL Radio has donated a plaque with all their names on it.

1997 Leona Bastyr
1998 Dorothy Erickson and Melissa Holz
1999 Kelly Delesha
2000 Keith Shaffer
2001 Linda Mitchell
2002 Theone Gilbertson
2003 Tom Laughlin
2004 Mel Vigesaa and Brandon Rehmann
2005 Whillocks, Mary, Marnie and Chris
2006 John Whipple
2007 Jeni Haefemeyer
2008 Mary Heggedahl
2009 Richard and Charlotte McDonough
2010 Jerry Kes
2011 Rosalie Vandervoot and Jason Zerck
2012 Stacey Nelson and Delores Sam
2013 Lori Jo Markman and Dana Cook
2014 Gracie Tait
2015 Chad Balfe
2016 Kerry Vigesaa and Nicole Bartness
2017 Beckie Chappuis VonRuden, John Milewski, Brian Homeier and Jan Balata
2018 Kay Kes, Kaitlyn Haefmeyer, Roxie Mitchell
2019 Christine Chambers, Caregiver and Katie Wren, Survivor
2020 The Holz Family
2021 Robin Donahue/Sarah Speckhals, Caregivers and Tiffany Stanton, Survivor

This is very informative for good health care.

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