The student-organized Hope College chapter of Colleges Against Cancer will sponsor its ninth annual Relay for Life event from 7 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 11, until 7 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 12, at the DowCenter.

The Relay for Life is part of a national fund-raising initiative for the American Cancer Society. The non-competitive event invites members of the Hope College community to form teams and then walk the Dow Center's track overnight to raise funds for research, education, advocacy and service in the fight against cancer.

The relay will begin with an opening ceremony at 7 p.m. that will recognize cancer survivors who are members of the Hope community. The survivors have also been invited to participate in the first lap, followed by a reception for all survivors and their caregivers.

Awareness events focused on different types of cancer have been scheduled across the 12-hour relay. In addition to the opening, the event will include a 9:30 p.m. ceremony honoring caregivers, a 10 p.m. luminaria ceremony honoring those who have lost their lives to cancer, an 11:30 p.m. ceremony emphasizing fighting back against cancer, and a 6:30 a.m. closing ceremony.

Hundreds of students participate in the college's Relay for Life annually, with 565 signed up this year. The 34 teams that have registered include a variety of student organizations, as well as groups representing residence halls, academic programs and others who have banded together specifically on behalf of the event.

The total raised by the Hope relay from 2003, when it began, through last year is $297,882.70.

The Dow Center is located at 168 E. 13th St., on 13th Street at Columbia Avenue.