Brian McCoy is appealing to people’s sweet tooth to raise funds for this year’s “Relay for Life,” which will take place overnight on June 24 at Fort Frances High School.
Made from purchased candy melts, the local resident is creating white chocolate-type candy on a stick in the shape of ribbons.
“I was just looking on some websites and came across the ribbon molds and thought it was something I could do,” McCoy explained, though noting he’s never made candy before.
“I just thought it was something different,” he reasoned.
McCoy has been involved with his family in the “Relay for Life” for the past three years after his aunt, Judy Carter, lost her battle with cancer.
“I wanted to do something and this idea just came up,” he remarked.
McCoy has made the ribbon-shaped candy in three colours so far—pink, blue, and yellow—to represent breast cancer, prostate cancer, and liver and bladder cancer.
“I didn’t think I would sell as many as I have already,” he enthused, noting he’s sold 180 of the candies simply by word of mouth.
He had hoped to sell 300, but now thinks he might be able to sell as many as 500.
“If I get to 300, I’ll be happy,” he said.
While not difficult to make, McCoy said the ribbon candies take time to set.
As well, he only had been able to make nine at a time. But he recently got some more molds, so the process will be more efficient now.
McCoy is pleased with how well his fundraiser is going, and already has plans to do it again next year.
He even hopes to expand to making ribbon-shaped suckers in different flavours—perhaps as early as next week if things go as planned.
The candies, which cost $2 each, currently are being sold at The Great Bear, A Little Off the Top, and Ernest Thompson Distributors, and also by contacting McCoy at 274-9766.
He will also have the candies for sale during the “Relay for Life.”
Meanwhile, plans are continuing to take shape for the annual event.
“Things are going really well,” enthused Jennifer Anderson, this year’s co-chair for the event. “We’ve got about 15 teams registered and ready to go.
“And a lot of new teams, which is nice to see.”
Teams of 10 still are encouraged to sign-up.
“We’re always looking for more,” Anderson stressed, noting 24 teams took part last year, many of which registered at the last minute.
Anderson also said the “Survivors’ Dinner” is set to go beforehand at Boston Pizza, starting earlier this year (3:30 p.m.) to allow enough time for the participants to get to the high school for the “Survivors’ Lap.”
The committee is asking all survivors to register so they know how many people to expect.
“There are tons of activities planned, as well,” added Anderson, citing a “Relay Idol” singing competition with judges and prizes is in the works, in addition to theme laps and a frozen T-shirt game.
And this year’s theme will see teams showcasing a particular decade with the “Relay Through the Decades” motif.
Anderson said luminaries are available at Pharmasave and The Harbourage for $5 each. People can take them home, decorate them, and return them to Gillons’.
They will also be available on-site.
“You don’t have to decorate them, but it’s nice to personalize them,” Anderson reasoned. “Some people put a lot of creativity into it.
“It’s just fabulous,” she enthused. “It’s a really neat way to help us remember why we are doing this.”
An M&M Meats charity BBQ also will be held on June 17, with proceeds goings towards the “Relay.”
They are planning to take orders and deliver to businesses that day.
“It never fails to amaze me how we can raise $40,000 in just 12 hours,” Anderson remarked.
“It’s just so great that we can do that.”
Funds raised from the local “Relay” will be used within the Thunder Bay-Rainy River districts.