Students boogied at GW’s third-annual Dance Marathon in the Marvin Center Saturday to raise money for the D.C. Children’s Medical Center. Organizers said they were pleased with the event despite drawing a smaller number of participants and raising less money than in past years.
Participants raised about $7,000, dancing from 9 p.m. Friday to 9 a.m. Saturday. Organizers will have an exact figure later this semester because dancers receive donations from sponsors after the marathon takes place.
“It’s for a great cause, and it’s a lot of fun,” said junior Elizabeth Petnuch, chair of the event.
Petnuch could not dance because of a recent knee surgery but began planning for the event early last semester.
Student volunteers and a disc jockey from Hot 99.5 provided music throughout the night.
From 10 to 11 p.m. nearly 100 students were present at the marathon, but as the night wore on the number of dancers dwindled.
By midnight, the majority of students in attendance were those who organized the event or members of this year’s Colonial Cabinet, a group of student who run the freshman orientation program. Event organizers wore orange shirts, and cabinet members wore tie-dye.
CI cabinet members said they attend the marathon every year as the “morale crew.”
“I’m excited to be doing it … it’s a good way to get the whole campus together,” said freshman CI cabinet member Meredith Street.
Several members of the Kappa Sigma fraternity also attended the event, many to support their brother and emcee of the event, sophomore Anthony Marinos, who was recently elected Student Association Business School senator.
Marinos was offered the emcee position after winning “most spirited dancer” at the marathon last year.
“I just got my second wind,” said Marinos at around midnight. “I’ll get my third and fourth and fifth wind later.”
Marinos said he was disappointed with the smaller turnout for the event this year.
Last year the marathon earned about $8,600, when the event was held from midnight until noon the following day.
Event organizers blame the event’s time change for the decreased participation.
“It’s hard because it’s right before spring break and midterms,” Petnuch said.
Petnuch said organizers plan to switch back to a midnight to noon marathon time next year.
Despite the slightly smaller turnout, dancers said they enjoyed their time at the marathon. Sophomore Emily Aaronson, Delta Gamma president, attended the marathon with her sorority sisters.
“I think it’s a great cause, its really been a lot of fun … everyone seemed to be having a blast.”
Some students said they attended for the entertainment.
“I came out to support the cause and to have a good time on a Friday night,” freshman Tina Lalangas said.
The SA, Panhellenic Association, Interfraternity Council and Program Board sponsored the event. In total, $3,000 was donated to host the marathon.
The PB also donated $30 gift certificates for Tower Records to winners of various dance contests throughout the night.
Dominos and Papa John’s pizza each donated 10, and Potbelly’s sandwich shop donated 20 sandwiches. GW Dining Services also gave the dancers some refreshments.