March Madness’ “Big Dance” may be over, but RockeTHON’s “Long Dance” is ready to take off.
The dance marathon, which traditionally runs for 13 hours, is scheduled for Saturday, April 10, at the Health Education Center, beginning at 10 a.m. and running through approximately 8 p.m.
And while the 20th edition of the community fundraiser has a slightly different look from previous years – in 2021, the dancers will be socially distanced – the event’s importance hasn’t changed.
All the money raised by the event goes directly to a local children’s hospital for new research and technology needed to uphold the standard of care for the kids, RockeTHON director Morgan Colley said.
“We are able to be a part of something that can truly change and help someone’s life,” said Colley, who will graduate in May with a bachelor’s degree in biology and has been involved with RockeTHON since her freshman year.
“These children go through so much so being able to help them along with helping them feel like children again is truly indescribable. I dance also in order to help alleviate financial burdens on families and allow them to be able to focus on being there for their children during this time of need.”
The event will have eight stations set up incorporating normal RockeTHON traditions, including the wrist band cutting ceremony. The event will follow COVID-19 safety protocols, and each station will be sanitized in between use.
And while families from Children’s’ Miracle Network have been on hand at past RockeTHONs to share their success stories and how the fundraiser has made a positive impact on their lives, they are asked not to attend this year because of the pandemic.
RockeTHON will also have a day-long live stream for those can’t be there in person to cheer on the dancers.
In previous years, the event drew as many as 900 participants. Colley said there will be 300 participants, the safe capacity maximum for COVID-19 protocols.
Despite the smaller number of dancers, she still expects to raise a substantial amount of money.
We hope to raise $72,000,” Colley said, “which would mean we raised $1.5 million dollars over the past 20 years.”
For more information or to donate, visit the RockeTHON site.