The Discover Downtown Merrill Association Relay for Life team features 2,000-plus feet of bras strung over the Wisconsin River on the Center Avenue Bridge, “the Gateway to Merrill.”
“We’re ‘Crazy for a Cause’ – that’s the theme of the Merrill Chamber of Commerce Crazy Day celebration on Thursday, Aug. 2, and we took it to heart,” says Christine Vorpagel, Dynamo Creative Marketing, co-chair of the Breast Cancer Awareness Project. “Co-chair D’Lacey Haight of Merrill Ace Hardware heard of it done (‘Bras Across the Fox’) so we thought let’s raise money for the local Relay for Life event coming Aug 3 & 4 to the Lincoln County Fairgrounds!
“Come to Downtown Merrill and see this creative visual outpouring of support for Cancer Survivors and their families, as well as a tribute to those who fought the battle of cancer bravely,” she added.
Dave Wendorf of Wendorf Construction donated the use of his lift truck and his expertise, along with Tim Haight who raised the line. Many hands and donations made this event possible.
“The many colors of the bras donated from as far away as Florida, Indiana and Minnesota as well as other parts of Wisconsin demonstrate how much folks have been touched by cancer in their lives,” Vorpagel noted.
Teri Chladek, local Relay for Life chair, says the American Cancer Society appreciates the large amount of publicity this has been generated for this year’s Relay for Life event. “It’s the most publicity we’ve received in all my years of being Chairwoman,” she said.
Delores Bauman, Local Team Development coordinator, announced the coming bra collection for Bras Across the Bridge at the Survivor Brunch and spent several hours hooking and tying them on the baler twine. There was even a contest for a $1 donation to Relay for Life to guess how many bras would be collected; 1,094 was the total. Janet Kleinschmidt won the contest with a guess of 1,085, taking home an estimated $377 worth of gift certificates and items donated by downtown businesses.