Dance for the Kids

Students of Florida State University strapped on their dancing shoes for their 20th Anniversary Dance Marathon. This 40-hour event in Donald L. Tucker Civic Center gave over 2,000 students an opportunity to raise money for terminally ill children. The dance marathon ended March 1. 

The dance marathon's opening ceremony began with the Garnett Dancers, whose overall goal was to make sure the dance marathon participants were awake and ready to stay on their feet. 

Ryan Praizner, marketing director for the marathon, expressed his gratitude towards the students

"What makes dance marathon so successful is the passion that the students have," Praizner said. 

Students that attended the marathon were asked not to sit down until Saturday at 3 p.m. If at any point the students felt worn out, they had the option to get money placed in their dance marathon account. 

Alexandria Whitaker, Dance Marathon public relations assistant, enjoyed dancing for the children; however, she did not hesitate to take up the offer of a 10-minute break for $25.

On Saturday, the Gold Dancers, who are the second shift of spirit marshals, began teaching students line dances. The students danced cheerfully knowing that every dollar and cent that was raised would be helping places such as The Children’s Miracle Network Hospital.

Jared Becker, sponsorship chair for the Dance Marathon, thought it was important to help others.

“What’s the point of life if you’re not living to help other people?” Becker said.

The lights turned down and the crowd drew near the stage. All of the FSU Dance Marathon representatives were on stage ready to reveal how much was fundraised. The students and others who donated rose over $1 million.

"For the Kids! For The Kids! For the Kids!" was chanted from students who danced 20 hours straight. Beyond the chant many students became emotional because of the positive affect it will have on all of the families.

The funds raised at the marathon will be distributed to Tallahassee’s Children’s Miracle Network Hospital, the University of Florida Health Shands Children’s Hospital and the FSU College of Medicine.