Dance Marathon Raises $84,909.82 for Special Gifts Theatre

By Mara Shapiro

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Dance Marathon raised $84,909.82 for Special Gifts Theatre  at their annual dance from 5 p.m. to 12 a.m. Saturday, May 26 at Niles West.

This marks the tenth anniversary of Dance Marathon at District 219. The total made over these 10 years is $546,909. Various charities such as Refugee One, which was last year’s charity, have benefited from the proceeds.

One of the sponsors of Dance Marathon and student activities director Jessica Ogulnik is proud of the results.

“I think that DM is this successful because of the students that we have!  They are incredibly dedicated, and find that raising money for a charity is worth their time!  Most kids that do DM do it again, because once you see what your hard work is accomplishing, you will definitely come back the following year,” says Ogulnik.

Junior Executive Lyba Zia thinks that Dance Marathon was so successful because of the high student and staff involvement.

“Dance Marathon is possible due to the collaborative efforts of Niles West and Niles North. This is one of the only times the two rival schools come together for sake of a greater good. We had numerous fund-raisers throughout the year…. The dancers, Morale Captains, and Executives all played a big role in our success!” Zia says.

Zia also feels that not only did Special Gifts Theatre benefit, but the participants did as well.

” Dance Marathon is a fun-filled event where the party just never seems to stop. I’m not shocked that everyone who came had a great time. It took a year of planning and fund-raising. Together, we were able to give Special Gifts Theatre $84,909.82 but the gift that Dance Marathon gives to all of its participants is priceless.”

The charity for next year is expected to be announced this Wednesday.