Students plan to dance the weekend away for a good cause
For the past 16 years, the Florida State University community has gathered together to raise $3.3 million in a unique way: Dance Marathon.
This year, from Feb. 17-19, nearly 3,000 participating students, 1,800 of whom are volunteering to dance, will take to the floor at the Tallahassee- Leon County Civic Center to raise money for the Children's Miracle Network at Shands Hospital for Children in Gainesville and the FSU College of Medicine's Pediatric Outreach Programs.
"Last year, Dance Marathon raised $486,927.30," said Dance Marathon Public Relations Chair Kiara Provenzano. "We can only hope that this number will increase this year."
The 40-hour event is broken up into two 20-hour shifts where dancers hear the stories of those they are helping, take part in hour-themed events and even learn (and perform) a 10-minute line dance. The first shift will begin at 7 p.m. on Feb. 17 and end at 3 p.m. on Feb. 18. The second shift will begin at 7 p.m. on Feb. 18 and end at 3 p.m. on Feb. 19. Each dancer commits to dance for 20 hours in order to "dance for those who can't."
The efforts of the participating students go beyond this weekend's main event. Throughout the year, Dance Marathon participants hold fundraising events such as food canning, online fundraising and fundraising through local Tallahassee vendors.
The funds raised from last year's Dance Marathon for Children's Miracle Network at Shands Hospital for Children were used for research grants, pediatric medical equipment along with the funds to help improve the pediatric care within the facility.
Dance Marathon touches not only those who benefit from the funds raised; it also inspires those students who are involved.
"Hearing the families tell their stories at Dance Marathon makes me remember why we put on this event and how important Dance Marathon is to them," Provenzano said. "The event continues to grow each year, and I am glad I am able to be a part of making miracles happen for these children."
For more information, contact Kiara Provenzano at (561) 289-1306 or visit dm.fsu.edu.
"The event continues to grow each year, and I am glad I am able to be a part of making miracles happen for these children."
Dance Marathon Public Relations Chair