At K-State’s inaugural dance marathon, held Saturday from 4 to 10 p.m., everything at the event was planned around the theme “For the Kids” in an effort to raise $10,000 for local families and hospitals with the Children’s Miracle Network.
K-State was partnered up with three “miracle families” from Stormont Vail Hospital in Topeka who would receive the benefits for their children.
While K-State may be new to the dance marathon scene, the dance marathon program is the largest student-run philanthropy in the nation according to the Children’s Miracle Network, and they have approximately 350 schools and over 1 million annual participants involved.
Erin Bush, graduate student in agronomy and dance marathon graduate advisor, is not new to the Children’s Miracle Network dance marathon scene.
“I grew up in Indiana, and this was a really big thing there,” Bush said. “It’s where it all got started. The first dance marathon was at the University of Indiana in 1991. After that, the movement was born.”
As part of the event, the dance marathon committee had a lineup of live musical performances, games, raffles, food and time for the miracle families to share their stories with everyone.
“It’s a ton of fun, and its great to see the community working together to support our kids,” Melissa Herd, one of the miracle moms, said. “It’s almost overwhelming to see people want to help families like ours.”
While the children may be fighting different diseases under different conditions, many students said all of the personal stories hit home.
“It was great getting to hear from the families, and you could see how appreciative they were,” Allison Friesen, junior in education and mathematics, said.
In total, K-State raised $15,016, which surpassed the goal of $10,000 that had been set at the start of the event.
“We are going to be here for a while because we are building a legacy,” Bush said.
For people who were unable to attend the event or still want to help, you can do so until the beginning of May at the event’s website.