Dance Marathon raises thousands to support AIDS/HIV victims

by Raya Zimmerman

Participants in the University of Minnesota’s first annual Dance Marathon raised more than $11,000 on Saturday to benfit One Heartland, a national HIV and AIDS program that provides support for children and families who are affected by the disease.

The event boasted more than 100 dancers, 70 volunteers and 25 committee members who began the festivities at 10 a.m.

Jessica Hermanson, co-director of the Marathon, said the event was a success.

“People enjoyed themselves and hopefully they got something out of it,” she said.” I definitely think we created a great starting point for subsequent years.”

The majority of participants showed their support at the Radisson University Hotel early in the day. The ones who really shined, though, were those who busted their moves for the entire 12 hours.

“They were phenomenal and had high energy the whole time,” Hermanson said.

Students and community members were required to raise or pitch in $100 to attend.

Last year, the event, which was formally known as the Dance Your Heart Out dance marathon, fundraised upwards of $40,000.