The Liberty Relay For Life committee has been preparing for the event that will be held May 18 and 19 at Churchill Park.
The Relay, co-chaired by Annie Holzschuh and Debbie Mullarky, has been held in the township for the past 11 years.
''It started at the high school stadium,'' Holzschuh said. ''It moved to Churchill Park six years ago.''
The event begins at 6 p.m. with an opening ceremony. Kicking off the Relay is the National Anthem followed by the survivor lap. Survivors are treated to a dinner provided by Bob Evans on Belmont Avenue.
Girard resident and former Relay co-chair Ron Scirocco, from Girard, is the featured speaker this year.
''He's a great speaker, and Relay means a lot to him,'' Holzschuh said. ''Even though he's no longer a co-chair, he is still very active and travels on a national level with Relay for Life.''
Scirocco, who was with the Liberty Relay since it began, still attends every year and helps with the luminiarias, she said. This year, the Relay committee is trying something different with the event.
''We're part of a pilot study that is nationwide,'' Holzschuh said.
The study, called GPQ, which stands for Growth, Quality and Potential, uses community feedback to determine how the event can better service the public as well as offer a better understanding of the fundraiser. Liberty Township was one of only 13 Relays in the country chosen for the survey. There are more than 5,000 Relays in the United States each year.
''We're trying to get that wow factor,'' Holzschuh said.
The luminaria ceremony will include a bag piper and a church choir. To save time, rather than read each name on the luminarias, a projection screen will scroll the names throughout the entire 24 hours of the event. The screen will be displayed in the Wall of Honor tent.
In addition, there is usually a cancer survivor who will relate their story sometime during the luminaria ceremony, but this year it will be as if they are speaking to each person, Holzschuh said.
Prizes will be awarded, as usual, in certain categories throughout the Relay. These include most money raised on site, most money raised overall, best campsite, team T-shirts, frozen T-shirt, best morning coffee, and frozen chicken bowling. Also included will be children's games from 11 a.m .to 1 p.m. May 19. Relay teams will provide games that corresponds with their theme and treats and prizes will be awarded. A Zumba class will be held in the morning of May 19.
Relay organizers also are taking into account that the event falls on Armed Services Weekend, Holzschuh said.
''We're going to have a color guard and there will be a patriotic lap,'' she said. ''There will be other patriotic things as well.''
Holzschuh also stressed the cooperation organizers have received from Township administrators and departments.
''The Township has been amazing,'' she said. ''Between the township, the fire department and the police department, they do everything for us.''
From 6 p.m. May 18 to 6 p.m. May 19, teams and walkers, some walking the entire 24 hours, will take to the designated track in the park. Approximately 25 teams will be participating as well as associate teams.