I don’t care why you do dance marathon, or how you were recruited for the big event on March 7th. For some people, needing something to do on a given weekend is their reason, and for others, they wanted to pad a resume. Everyone comes to dance marathon for their own reason, and that’s okay. It’s okay to want to attend a social event, to see what students have been talking about all year long, to want to get a free t-shirt and complete a campus traditions challenge. I say this because for all the reasons people do dance marathon, they leave with a different answer, the same answer, for the kids.
I cannot expect every student who attends dance marathon to come to our event with the hopes of raising money for the kids, because realistically, this isn’t going to happen. What can happen, is thousands of college students meeting miracle kiddos and hearing their stories, and becoming passionate about the same cause. Dance marathon is not just one day of the year where we celebrate all of our hard work to this amazing cause, but it’s a day where lives are changed, passion is sparked, and some of the most genuine relationships are formed. Dance marathon is about joining a cause bigger than yourself, surrounding yourself with people who share that same passion, and challenging yourself.
People have often asked me what my favorite part of dance marathon is, a question that I don’t have the right answer to quite yet. My first instinct is always the kids; these kids are my role models and have changed my life. Besides the kiddos, my favorite thing is seeing the light turn on with dancers, they suddenly realize why they are dancing, and become passionate about the cause. I notice this when our opening ceremony begins and we play our opening video, when miracle families get up on stage and share their story, and when dancers reach their fundraising goals. This is one of the most intimate moments of dance marathon; the time when the cause connection takes place. For some this has already happened, the switch that ignited their passion for dance marathon went off a long time ago.
I’m excited to see the lights go off for thousands of UNI college students. I’m excited to hear the many reasons of why people came to our dance marathon. I’ve even more excited to leave Maucker Union on March 7th with over 1,000 people with the same response a; we dance for the kids.