Dance Marathon 2013: Block 7 recap

Weinberg sophomore Erin Anderson rocks out during Block 7.

Lauren Caruba, Assistant Campus Editor

Onstage dancers and high-energy songs helped the crowd “bring down the house,” living up to the name of Block 7 as Dance Marathon entered its 18th hour.

As students herded back into the tent with sandwiches around 1 p.m., the emcees encouraged students to remain standing while they ate their lunches.

“If you’re sitting, I will find you,” emcee Demetri Elias said.

Children from the hero families revved up the dancers at the beginning of the block, dancing to “Higher” by Taio Cruz and Cascada’s “Evacuate the Dance Floor.” Students cheered when one child did a handstand and when several attempted to do “the worm” on the stage.

“Give it up once more for the kids,” Elias, a Weinberg junior, shouted to the dancers.

Coach Pat Fitzgerald and the football team took the stage around 1:45 p.m., leading the tent in singing the fight song. The Gator Bowl champions, some of them wearing superhero costumes, enthusiastically performed the Fresh Prince Tonto dance.

“We came here to dance,” Fitzgerald told the crowd.

After the dance, students cheered as the players jumped offstage and into the crowd.

Gold medal Olympic swimmer Matt Grevers (Communication ’07) appeared for the block’s celebrity video.

“You’re doing great, the more you do, the longer you dance, the better it is for the Danny Did Foundation,” he said.

A representative from the Udaykee family, one of the Danny Did Foundation’s heroes, commended the dancers for making it more than halfway through the marathon. He talked about his son, Alex, who has epilepsy. He talked about his sons aspirations of driving and having sleepovers and thanked the dancers for their support.

“There are no words … for how we can say thank you. It’s unbelievable what you are doing. The time, the energy, it’s beyond words,” he said. “Keep on going, keep on dancing, thank you very much,” he said. “Thank you so much, God bless, go ‘Cats.”

Block 7 began on schedule after the previous block was cut short when a female student collapsed and was taken to the hospital. However, the majority of students were unfazed by the incident and extended break, said McCormick junior Jim Harrell.

“Everyone was pretty calm,” he said. “No one was freaking out.”

As of the Jan. 22 half-money deadline, DM had raised $271,684, the finance committee announced at the end of the block. The dancers have now returned to the tent for Block 8, “Space Jam.”

— Lauren Caruba