The Basha High school football field shown, Wednesday, August 22, 2012 in Chandler. 

Tribune file

Chandler Relay for Life participants will pull an all-nighter May 2 from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. on May 3, in an effort to raise money and support cancer research.

The relay, which will be at Basha High School, is an essential fundraiser for the American Cancer Society that also unites participants and celebrates survivors.

“The main focus for us is the fundraising,” said Katie Perry, publicity chair for the event. “Aside from that we’ve planned a lot of fun activities to keep people engaged since we are keeping people up all night.”

Each team’s designated campsite will be decorated in a carnival theme. Aside from the games, there will be a Mr. Relay competition, superhero fashion show and a 3 a.m. zombie lap.

Chandler has hosted a Relay for Life event for 12 years, and the event has grown immensely over the years. This year will be its second year as a Mega Relay, which means the event raises more than $100,000.

“We’ve learned as we’ve gone on … but more than that is has grown,” she said. “We’ve really become a family. You really get to know the survivors that are there every year and you kind of battle with them.”

Perry has participated in Relay for Life for eight or nine years, and originally got involved because she has seen the effect of cancer on her family.

“I lost my cousin at 23 to non-Hodgkins Burkitt Lymphoma, and since then I have been diagnosed with skin cancer twice,” she said. “My father, my grandfather and my uncle all have skin cancer. It’s a family relay and we relay together.”

Basha is located at 5990 S. Val Vista Drive. For people interested in participating in Relay for Life or donating to the cause, visit relayforlife.org/chandleraz.

• Shelby Slade is a sophomore at ASU’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication. She is an intern with the Tribune this semester. Reach her at tribintern@evtrib.com.

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