THON weekend fundraiser set to begin at Penn State's Bryce Jordan Center
February 19, 2016 4:33 PM
(Joe Hermitt, PennLive.com/Associated Press)
People dance in the stands during the 43rd IFC/Panhellenic Dance Marathon at the Bryce Jordan Center on Sunday, Feb. 22, 2015.
By Bill Schackner / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Penn State University's Bryce Jordan Center swelled with noise and emotion this evening as 708 dancers backed by thousands of volunteers renew the annual Penn State Dance Marathon to combat childhood cancer.
The 46-hour event on the University Park campus, during which dancers can not not sit or sleep, caps a yearlong drive to raise money for treatment and research by some 15,000 volunteers participating the world's largest student-run philanthropy.
The Penn State IFC/Panhellenic Dance Marathon, or "THON," garnered $13 million last year, officials said. Since 1977, a total of $127 million has gone to its beneficiary, Four Diamonds at Penn State Hershey Children’s Hospital.
This year's grand total will be publicly unveiled inside the Jordan Center Sunday afternoon.
Four-hundred-plus student groups from Greek organizations to student athletes have conducted fundraisers and participated in other events and spent time with children who are beneficiaries of the event. Some of those children will take part in events in the Jordan Center this weekend including fashion shows and a talent contest.
"We’re excited to have so many families be here and experience a weekend not burdened by their cancer diagnosis,” Thon 2016 Executive Director Katie Mailey said in a statement. “This weekend gives Four Diamonds families and Penn State students the opportunity to interact with another, creating memories and bonds that will last a lifetime.”
Bill Schackner: firstname.lastname@example.org, 412-263-1977 and on Twitter: @BschacknerPG.
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