POLKTON — Amy Turner is keeping a decade-old tradition alive.
Each year, she and her husband, Chris, dust off the decorations and open their decorated home as a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life.
“To say I love Christmas would be an understatement, and over the years friends and neighbors started asking could they come see our decorations,” Turner said. “Someone — I’m not sure who, at this point — said, “You should start charging a fee for everyone to come,” and I got to thinking, “What a great way to raise money for a wonderful cause close to my heart.”
This cause is very personal to Turner, as she has several friends and family members who have suffered from cancer. Her grandfather, uncle, father-in-law, husband’s grandmother, father and co-worker and neighbors have all had cancer, she told the Anson Record last year.
When asked why she keeps going, Turner said that it was a really hard to answer it this year.
“My father passed away suddenly on Feb. 13, and I have really struggled through a great deal of tears with the idea of doing the Open House this year,” Turner said. “He was a very vital part of helping with the decorating process and he was always in attendance the day of the event to greet friends, neighbors and strangers alike.”
Turner said that her father was “such a wonderful Christian man,” and that his brother, Steve Thomas, passed away of pancreatic cancer May 10, 2012.
“I know he would have wanted us to continue with raising funds to help with the cause of fighting a disease that has affected so many of our family and friends,” she said.
The first time she held the open house, they made about $250. Last year, Turner said that approximately 125 people attended and they raised a little more than $3,000.
Turner doesn’t set a goal, “as any amount would be wonderful.”
“I would like to thank everyone for coming out over the last several years,” she said. “They have helped to raise over $10,000 in donations, and without their attendance, it would not be possible.”
The Turners’ Open House will be from 5 to 7 p.m. Dec. 2 at 13181 N.C. 742 North in Polkton, and all donations are welcome.
The Relay for Life in Anson County will be held at 6 p.m. May 18 at Anson High School, according to the event’s American Cancer Society web page.
Reach Natalie Davis at 704-994-5471.