Groups get involved to raise money with Dance Marathon

Tracy Tucker

Dance Marathon recruiters are hoping to bring all types of groups and organizations together for the Dec. 1 event to raise money for children with terminal illnesses in Iowa and their families.

With 600 participants, 100 volunteers and 100 committee members, Dance Marathon hopes to raise $175,000 this year, said Lisa Nash, executive co-director of Dance Marathon and senior in child and family services.

The largest team this year, with 29 members who live in the residence halls, calls itself Dance Mix. The team captain, Linnea Woline, was first introduced to Dance Marathon at freshman orientation.

“I totally jumped at the opportunity to dance, and helping the Children’s Miracle Network made it even better,” said Woline, sophomore in apparel, merchandising, design and production.

After being a dancer last year, Woline said she decided to start her own team this year.

In order to spread awareness, Woline said she bragged about Dance Marathon to her friends. From there, she went to her brother’s friends and girls on her floor, Woline said.

There are students from Oak Hall, Towers and Friley Hall, she said.

Woline said she is excited about the new members and what they will contribute to Dance Marathon, since 26 of the 29 members have never experienced the event before.

“They have a new enthusiasm and energy to keep us going, and that really excites me,” she said.

The Freshman Council has participated in Dance Marathon for the past two years and raised the most money last year, an honor the group would like to get again, said Meagan Harms, Freshman Council vice president.

The Freshman Council philanthropy committee started the council’s interest in the Dance Marathon, she said. The council became even more aware of the event through presentations by members of the Dance Marathon recruiting committee, Harms said.

“It gives freshmen the opportunity to get involved and jump in feet first,” said Harms, sophomore in journalism and mass communication.

The members raise the $175 expected of each participant by asking their families for money and canning, standing on Welch Avenue with cans asking people to contribute, Harms said.

“You just have to be willing to go out there and get it,” she said.

Phi Delta Theta, 2035 Sunset Drive, has been a big part of Dance Marathon since the beginning. It all started when a friend asked someone in the fraternity to help out, and it has been passed on to other members, said Adam Lane, member of Phi Delta Theta.

“It’s like a sickness here,” said Lane, Dance Marathon recruitment committee member.

Since the beginning of Dance Marathon in 1997, someone from Phi Delta Theta always has been involved, said Lane, senior in elementary education. Besides having a team every year, there always has been someone from the house on the executive committee for Dance Marathon, he said.

The 23 members of this year’s Phi Delta Theta team know how much they are appreciated, Lane said. Some of the kids who participate in the event talk about it for months afterward, he said.

“It’s an experience you can’t get anywhere else,” Lane said.

If interested in becoming a part of Dance Marathon, e-mail [email protected] or visit the Web site at

“I can’t even imagine having hemophilia or leukemia, so can you imagine facing that fact at the age of 4?” Woline said. “Those kids are going to have this disease 24/7 – I can dance for 15 hours.”