“Cancer sucks, Mini-THON rocks,” Four Diamonds parent and English teacher Tina Funke said at the Mini-THON kick off assembly in January.
For those who don’t know, Mini-THON is a scaled down version of Penn State’s “THON”, in which students, called dancers, raise money for the Four Diamonds Fund and come out for an evening of fun, games, dancing and of course, support.
This upcoming year will mark Red Lion’s eighth annual Mini-THON, with the event only expanding and increasing funds since the first one in 2008.
“You may have seen me this morning on the weather for the morning announcements,” Junior Billy Jackson said at the kick-off assembly. “But it was January 2, 2001 that I received the gravest forecast of all. A 100 percent chance of ALL leukemia.”
ALL Leukemia is a type of blood cancer that affected Billy’s life 13 years ago, and still affects him today.
Billy attended THON at Penn State in late February. “The atmosphere is great,” Jackson said. “I like to help the little children. It’s like a giant party. It’s a really fun atmosphere.”
Billy will also be attending Red Lion’s Mini-THON. “It’s fun, exciting and it shows support for people who don’t have it so well. It’s a good way of showing that you care,” Jackson said.
“I’m heading up to THON with some other families to support my sister,” Sophomore Carter Beyer said in a recent phone interview. Carter’s sister Cora has recently switched medication for her cancer treatment, and she is doing better now.
“She’s pretty much in the clear. We just worry about the after-effects.” Beyer said.
With so many touching stories told at the assembly, staff and students can really see the difference their support for Red Lion mini-THON and the Four Diamonds Fund makes.
New events at Mini-THON plan to bring new dancers to the floor
In addition to non-stop dancing, free food and the opportunity to help out childhood cancer victims, Mini-THON also offers a wide array of activities for dancers to engage in during Red Lion’s 12-hour Mini-THON.
“Mini-THON is an overall good experience for people to raise money for childhood cancer,” Kyle Palmieri, co-chair of the day of committee said. Mini-THON is brought to Red Lion students by the hard working staff and students of the Mini-THON committee who work from the previous year of Mini-THON until the next Mini-THON to bring every participant fun, games and of course, dancing.
“2015 Mini-THON will encompass a day that will bring more attendance than ever,” Mr. Ryan Small, a committee teacher for the day of Mini-THON said. “The variety of things to do are a guaranteed good time, so come support our cause.”
Dancers at Mini-THON can look forward to ultimate frisbee games up on Horn Field. Also, a new event this year includes the “World cup”, which is a game based off of the FIFA World Cup. It is a game of soccer which has rounds of elimination until one team is left standing, so break out those cleats and choose your partner.
Another very popular event at Mini-THON is the revered “Can Jam” in which Mr. Small and mathematician Ms. Arvanites will defend their title against any who are bold enough to challenge.
Some other events to look for are dodgeball, junk-in-the-trunk, relay races, the oreo roll and basketball. There is a large poster in the Commons area for students discretion displaying the events at Mini-THON.
In addition to athletic activities and games, the local band TAMMA will be making their second Mini-THON appearance in the commons at midnight.
“We’ll be opening with some Seven Nation Army, then playing Santeria by Sublime, Voodoo Child by Stevie Ray Vaughn and several others,” Ian Adler, Red Lion junior, lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist said.
Mini-THON is closer than it may seem; starting on Friday March 27 and trailing into the following morning. If a student has not signed up already, see any of the following teacher advisors: Mr. Small, Miss Capiotis, Miss White, Mrs. Wilson or Mrs. Beland.
Seventy-five dollars will need to be raised in order to attend and it will be collected the day of Mini-THON during student sign in’s before the event begins. See any club member or chair or advisor with any question, as always, FOR THE KIDS (FTK).