Students very literally danced the night away at APU’s Dance Marathon held on Friday, April 13 in UTCC. The marathon lasted for 9 hours and the only rule: no one is allowed to sit down. The marathon was to raise money and awareness for the Children’s Miracle Network. With a bright neon theme, students arrived decked out in their brightest attire. Each dancer was given a pink, yellow or green wristband. The colors represented what child they were supporting.
Doryan, 4, Daniella, 19, and Alexis, 16, were the three kids being supported. Alexis, 16, has been in the care of a hospital since age five. She was born with Alagille Syndrome, which is a very complex and chronic condition that affects multi-organs including liver and heart. Daniella, 19, was diagnosed with chronic Pancreatitis and Ulcerative Colitis at age 17 and has been hospitalized multiple times.
As soon as Doryan walked through the doors of UTCC, he was greeted by dancers. He even showed off his dancing skills by break dancing as a crowd of students formed around him cheering him on. “He loves the attention he gets and girls picking him up,” said Doryan’s mother, Georgina. “I love being able to bring awareness to college students.” Doryan was diagnosed with a rare brain tumor at 14 months old. He has had five months of chemo, 30 treatments and has relapsed two times.
To keep the energy going all night, there were board games, jump ropes, hoola-hoops, video games and a photo booth. A dance was taught step-by-step to classics such as, “Ice Ice Baby,” “Jump on It,” and “We Are Family.” The Cougar also made a guest appearance and danced amongst the crowd.
DJ Zap and DJ Raz blasted dance music all night. There were dance performances by VFO, UMOJA Step Team and APU’s Dance Company. The Calvillo Sisters and Johnny Strat also gave a vocal performance. The Underground Swing Dance performed and gave a swing dancing lesson to the dancers.
“This is my first time doing the dance marathon and it’s definitely a lot of fun. I love dancing with my friends and it helps support a great cause,” said sophomore Sammy Hoffman who came out with a group of friends to dance.
“I love dancing and it’s for a good cause,” said senior Kurt Johnson who came to support the dance marathon with Communiversity. He was not worried at all about dancing for nine hours. “If I’m going to dance, I’m going to go hard– all the way up till 4 A.M.”
The marathon raised $6,000 so far and is continuing to fundraise until May 13th.