UK Relay for Life looks for fundraising help from a toilet

Students who wake up with a big purple toilet in their yard are probably not hallucinating — they just may help fund the cure for cancer.

The traveling purple toilet has been a major fundraiser across the country for the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life. This year, the UK Relay Committee decided to take advantage of it.

“It’s a fundraiser that is fun and gets everyone involved,” said Lindsey Berlin, committee chair and an integrated strategic communications junior. “It makes light of a tough situation.”

Relay for Life is an annual walk that honors cancer survivors and pays tribute to those who have died from cancer. Last year, it raised over $405 million worldwide in 2007, according to the national Relay for Life Web site.

During the next two weeks, the toilet will be placed in various yards around campus. To remove the toilet, the resident must donate $10.

Residents who donate $25 can have the toilet moved to a yard of their choice. The committee will move the toilet each day until the relay March 28 and 29.

The relay, which will be held at Goodbarn Field from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m., will include a speech by Mayor Jim Newberry, a comedy show and decade-themed dance parties through the night.

Qdoba has donated food, and all of the proceeds from the $5 all-you-can-eat fee will benefit the American Cancer Society.

This will be the sixth year for the event at UK. So far, there are more than 160 participants and 28 teams, according to the UK Relay for Life Web site ( The purple toilet fundraiser is a way to help the school reach its goal of $19,000. As of now, the participants have collected about half of that goal, according to the Web site.

There will also be a Luminaria Ceremony, which is a common aspect of all Relays, in which lighted bags are used to represent people affected by cancer.

“They usually spell out ‘HOPE’ (with the bags),” said business freshman and cancer survivor Christina Rohan. “It helps the participants realize that their time and effort is helping others in this world. There is hope. You’ve just got to believe.”

To get involved or donate, visit the Relay for Life Web site ( To have the toilet placed in someone’s yard, contact Amanda Bibb of the American Cancer Society at (859) 260-8289.