Being silly and raising money for cancer research
L-R: Jen Hart, Jen Plusch and Susie Frost
They rolled before they walked.
Most of the members of the Relay for Life team known as the Rogue-bot Rollers met while practicing with the Cape Cod Roller Derby League. While the Rogue-bot Rollers have drifted away from roller derby, they still enjoy roller skating and they still wanted to stay connected.
“By having a Relay for Life team, we get to hang out, be silly and raise money,” said team leader Jennifer Plusch.
The Relay for Life is an overnight walk that raises funds for the American Cancer Society. Relays take place in hundreds of locations across the U.S. each spring including Orleans (May 21), Martha’s Vineyard (June 4), Wareham (June 18) and East Falmouth (June 24).
The Rogue-bot Rollers will take part in the Relay for Life of Mid Cape, starting at 10 a.m. on June 18 at Dennis-Yarmouth Regional High School, 210 Station Avenue, in South Yarmouth.
In between the opening and closing ceremonies, the Relay will include a celebratory lap for survivors and a candlelight luminaria ceremony to pay tribute to loved ones lost to cancer – plus a whole lot of walking.
“It’s a pretty cool event,” said team member Susie Frost, 47, of West Barnstable. “The event is sort of a festival. It’s a big celebration.”
Each of the eight members of the Rogue-bot Rollers team has a reason for walking in the Relay.
“This is my 13th year being part of Relay for Life,” said Frost, a potter who sells her creations through Wink Pottery. “When I started I had just finished treatment for leukemia. I thought, I’m still here and I can raise money to help out. I wanted to give back. Today I’m in perfect health. I’m lucky.”
For Plusch, 37, of Eastham, this will be her second time doing the Mid-Cape Relay; she also did one in Plymouth three years ago.
“Like everyone, I have family members who’ve been diagnosed and treated for cancer,” said Plusch, a kennel manager at the Animal Hospital of Orleans. “It’s one of those things that connects us all.”
Jen Hart, 42, of South Dennis, will be doing the relay for the second time.
“There’s not a lot of cancer in my family, but I’m friends with Susie and now I’ve met others, so I walk for anybody and everybody,” said Hart, a Trader Joe’s crew member.
“I’m not a competitive person but it’s fun to see who can raise the most money.”
The team members raise money individually through social media and collectively through events.
“Our team fundraises all year-round,” said Frost. “We already have $5,000. Last year we raised $7,000. I think we’ll figure out a way to top that.”
The team holds frequent bake sales and crafts sales, organized a fundraising yoga-thon at Power Yoga of Cape Cod in Harwich and wrapped presents in exchange for donations at Barnes & Noble last December.
“We wrapped for 12 hours straight,” said Plusch. The team will have a table at the Relay for Life of Mid Cape’s Mega Sale 10 a.m.-2 p.m. April 23 at the Senior Center in Dennis, Route 134.
The other members of the team are Keith Frost, Steph Lopez, Paula Powers, Amy Rollins and Mary Sprout.
[Featured Image: L-R, Stephanie Briody (instructor at Power Yoga of Cape Cod), Susie Frost and Jen Plusch. ]