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One Team, One Dream’

For some students, March is the most pivotal month of the year. Spring Break finally arrives and the months of hard work spent at the recreation center finally pay off.

But for others, March brings much more than just tan lines and beach bonfires. Instead, creative dance moves, fundraising and weeks of preparation pay off in one monumental event known as Dance Marathon. ‘

Dance Marathon, or DM as it is more commonly known, is a 32-hour fundraiser at the end of March that benefits St. Vincent Mercy Children’s Hospital in order to raise money and awareness for children treated by children’s hospitals. This year, BG is sponsoring 12 families known as the miracle families.

‘We are connected to the miracle families because they benefit from the money that we raise during DM,’ Family Relations Chair Lauren Wolk said. ‘The money goes’ towards funding research grants for the hospital, Playstations, movies and just anything that the children can play with while they’re in bed.”

‘ The children of the miracle families range in age from 5 to 13 and have been treated at the hospital for a number of different reasons, including cancer and invasive surgeries.’ ‘ ‘

Participating students, faculty and staff raising money for the miracle families are divided into three separate categories: dancers, moralers and bikers.

‘ Dancers are asked to remain on their feet for the entirety of the event and are provided with a moraler who offers them support and motivation during the weekend. Bikers are sent to Cincinnati and spend the weekend traveling back home to Bowling Green through varying types of weather.

This year, 160 dancers, 180 moralers and a monumental 85 bikers have signed up for the event. Also, for the first time ever, the marathon has recruited faculty, staff and graduate student dancers as well.’ ‘

‘ ‘We are really excited about the number of people participating this year,’ DM Director Erin Small said. ‘We have big plans for upcoming events, and the number of people involved will really get things going.” ‘

And though it is nearly two months away, Dance Marathon has already made its triumphant entrance onto campus.

‘We want this year to be better than the last one,’ Publicity Chair Francesca Scull said. ‘It’s a matter of striving for more, and every year proves that we’re succeeding in that aspect.”

Over the next two months, a number of different events and fundraisers will be held to prepare the campus for Dance Marathon weekend.

One of the most anticipated events is Mini Marathon, which will take place Sunday in the Union Ballroom from noon to 6 p.m.

The event is made up of nine high schools from around the area, although everyone is encouraged to attend.

The students will be able to meet some of the miracle families they are raising money for as well as participate in a line dance, both of which are activities that occur during Dance Marathon as well.

Dance Week, which takes place the week before Dance Marathon, is also a highly anticipated time for participants of DM.

‘The most popular event happening during Dance Week is probably the candle walk,’ Small said. ‘Participants walk around campus with candles for the miracle families, and it just really focuses everyone on the cause of Dance Marathon.’

Along with the events, a number of different fundraising ideas have also been created in order to fund Dance Marathon.

Plastic ‘Hugs the Hippo’ banks have been placed all over campus to encourage students to donate money on a regular basis.

Also, paper balloons can be purchased and signed for a dollar in the Falcon’s Nest with proceeds going toward the Miracle Network.

But regardless of the undisclosed amount of money being raised for Dance Marathon weekend, the DM committee hopes that participants remember the message behind the event when contributing to the Miracle Network.

‘The theme for this year is ‘One Team, One Dream,’ and I really think that reflects on the purpose of Dance Marathon,’ Small said. ‘We’re all doing this together, and together I think we really make a difference.’

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