PALMYRA, Mo. -- The Relay for Life of Marion County received two major awards last week for its fund-raising accomplishments in 2016.
The local event, which has repeatedly raised more than $100,000 annually in recent years, was recognized as a "nationwide top 10 per capita event" for counties with a population between 25,000 and 29,999.
Likewise, the Marion County event was cited as a "top 10 per capita event" in the Relay for Life's High Plains Division, which covers Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Texas, Hawaii and Guam.
The awards were presented to Andy Straube, who is heading the 2017 event, during the Palmyra Chamber of Commerce's luncheon last week.
Relay for Life is a national movement aimed at rising money and awareness to help the American Cancer Society save lives.
Kathryn McDaniel, community manager for the ACS, applauded the Relay for Life of Marion County for "the dedication and hard work of our teams and participants" in raising so much money year after year.
During the luncheon, the Flower Children -- one of the most successful local teams -- was recognized as a nationwide "Team of Excellence" for its fund-raising efforts. The team, led by Mark and Stephanie Bross, raised more than $68,000 in 2016. Most of that came through the team's annual Spring Fling event, which is slated for April 22 this year.
The Palmyra Youth team, led by Larry Seago and Amy Erwin, was recognized as a "Jade Team" for raising about $12,000 in 2016 through a series of local events.
The Relay for Life of Marion County also honored the Palmyra Spectator for its years of support. A plaque was awarded to the newspaper's owners, Mark and Patty Cheffey.
This year's Relay for Life event in Marion County will be held from 4 p.m. to midnight June 2 in downtown Hannibal.
More information is available at relayforlife.org/marioncomo.