BYU students plan first BYU Dance Marathon

Ari Davis
Taylor Brown, Cat Black, Kayla Ellis and Scotty Warczak are four of six BYU Dance Marathon Executive Board members. (Ari Davis)

What began as a class project will become a premier event as BYU hosts its first annual Dance Marathon.

The BYU Dance Marathon will commence March 18-19, 2016 to raise money for Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City. The student-run event will last 24 hours, starting Friday evening. Attendants are supposed to stay on their feet for the entire event, dancing, doing activities, and participating in other forms of entertainment in celebration of the year’s fundraising successes.

The purpose of the event is to “dance for those who can’t” according to Dance Marathon’s first mission statement. All the proceeds go to the local hospital. Dance Marathon is a nationwide movement involving high school and college students to raise funds for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, a non-profit that gives money to 170 children’s hospitals. A year of fundraising ends with a dance marathon.

This movement began in 1991 by University of Indiana students who danced a marathon in memory of a fellow student who died of AIDS. Now college students across the country bring this movement to their respective campuses.

BYU’s Dance Marathon chapter began Spring Term when six Intro to PR students planned a hypothetical Dance Marathon campaign. Now four of them form the BYU Dance Marathon Executive Board with two other students.

Kayla Ellis, a junior majoring in pre-communications at BYU, said when she and her fellow students saw how passionately they felt about their mock campaign, they decided to do it for real.

“The more people we talk to, the more donations we get and the more people want to get involved,” Ellis said.

They will hold an information meeting on campus Oct 1, 2015, since the organization is not well known on the Western part of the United States. The exact location is to be determined.

To register as a marathoner will cost $10 per person. Students may sign up as individuals or as a group, but each person will have a fundraising website and must raise an initial sum of $100. The marathon will begin Friday evening and last all night and all next day to end Saturday evening. Students who do not register are invited to help jump start the event after opening ceremonies.

For more information on the Dance Marathon, contact and look for @byudm on Instagram.

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