An estimated 7,000 people arrived on the Cleveland University-Kansas City (CU-KC) campus Sept. 19 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s annual “Light the Night” walk against cancer. The event was held to raise awareness about blood-related cancers and to generate funds to aid in the treatment and to help find a cure. Fundraising teams in the Kansas City metro answered the call, raising more than $600,000 for the cause.
Several area restaurants, including Rosati’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, Chick-Fil-A and Olive Garden, provided food for the night, and Freddy’s Frozen Custard dished out the “sweet treats.” The carnival-like environment offered a wide-range of entertainment for the children in attendance. Included were a bounce house, robot competitions, balloon artists, face painting and a host of other activities. Local high school musicians and dance teams also performed.
The evening culminated with the walk in which individuals carried illuminated lanterns to help bring light to the darkness of cancer. Gold lanterns represented a loved one lost to cancer, cancer survivors carried white lanterns, and those walking in support of the fight against cancer were denoted with red lanterns. Participants walked a large circular loop through the neighborhood before returning to the CU-KC campus.
The walk in Overland Park was one of nearly 200 similar events held this fall in communities across North America in honor of the ongoing fight against leukemia and lymphoma.