THON is 16 days away and the excitement in the frigid air of Happy Valley is growing.
With over 15,000 Penn State students volunteering for THON, there’s no doubt that each and every volunteer feels honored to be involved in raising money to stop childhood cancer in its tracks. However, 700 of those volunteers will not be stopping in their tracks. In fact, they won’t be sitting down for 46 hours between February 17 to 19 in the Bryce Jordan Center. Instead, they will dance their hearts out for the kids.
Some dancers are chosen through their THON organizations, while others set off to independently fundraise and, if they raise the allotted amount of money, enter a dancer lottery and cross their fingers that they get randomly chosen. This past week, a few lucky students’ work paid off when they were chosen to dance in THON 2017 through the dancer lottery.
So, what does it feel like when you realize you’re dancing in THON? Valley spoke to two THON dancers to find out.
Emilie Dormer, a senior, has been inspired by THON since seeing her cousin dance years ago.
“I started my own Mini-THON and I was on the Dancer Relations Committee for three years which was the greatest experience,” says Dormer.
This fall she partnered with her friend, Taylor Davis, and spent tireless hours fundraising org-less.
“We didn’t think we’d get it at all!” says Dormer. “Independently dancing has been my dream for so long and this is the greatest honor to be able to stand for 46 hours in this fight against pediatric cancer.”
Emotions were running high when her name was drawn from the lottery.
“I can’t stop crying because I’m so happy,” says Dormer.
Dormer wasn’t the only independent dancer who reacted to the news with tears of joy. Jacqui Walker, also a senior, shared her teary excitement with her mother immediately.
“I started crying because I couldn’t believe it was real and actually happening. It is honestly such a surreal feeling,” says Walker, “I talked to my mom first actually because I was on the phone with her when I got the email. She was so happy for me since she’s known I’ve wanted to do this since freshman year.”
Once the tears are out of their system, what are these two dancers going to do to prepare now that they’re official THON dancers?
“I definitely am going to cut out caffeine because I’m addicted,” says Dormer.
“I’m just trying to stay calm, stay up on my school work and prepare my body to the best of my ability until the weekend comes,” says Walker.
Get your tutu’s ready and your comfortable shoes on because THON is just around the corner. Valley wishes good luck to all dancers. For the Kids!