Dance Marathon 2014: Block 5 recap

Hayley Glatter, Copy Chief

Suspenders and cowboy hats decorated dancers as they meandered into the tent, breakfast in hand, to start Nerd-Western-themed Block 5.

After 12 hours of dancing, participants were rewarded with a much-deserved reprieve from standing as they sat to enjoy student group performances over breakfast. Dancers were grateful for the break, but their glazed-over eyes reflected the hard work they’ve put in during the first four blocks of Dance Marathon.

“It’s nice, but at the same time, we’re not even halfway done,” SESP freshman Cora Vasserman said.

As dancers took the opportunity to rest their eyes, hip-hop dance group Fusion kicked off the show. They were followed by all-male a capella group Freshman Fifteen, whose attempt to amp up the crowd with One Direction’s “Kiss You” was met with tepid audience participation. Northwestern’s Drumline closed out the show with up-tempo beats.

Even the high-energy groups, however, could not seem to conquer the lethargy that overwhelmed the dancers.

“It went very well, but everyone was super exhausted,” Freshman Fifteen member Zachary Laurence said. “They were not as responsive as we’d hoped, but that is totally understandable.”

After breakfast, dancers were slow to get back on their feet to continue the marathon. Midway through the block, however, participants got some encouragement from Detroit Tigers pitcher Rick Porcello and the Eli Young Band, two celebrities who have worked with Team Joseph in the past.

“I think what you’re doing is great,” said Porcello, a member of Team Joseph’s advisory board. “This generation of boys that has Duchenne right now needs you, so keep dancing. Let’s go, let’s have some fun.”

As the block came to a close, dancers were reminded of the positive impact the money they raise can have. Representatives from The Danny Did Foundation, last year’s DM beneficiary, took the stage to thank participants for their efforts.

“Thank you guys, again,” said Tom Stanton, Danny Did co-founder. “We’re so excited that you’re supporting Team Joseph this year. Team Joseph is another great cause, and we are so happy to welcome them into the club of beneficiaries.”

Dancers were reinvigorated by Stanton’s words, and closed out the block stronger than they began it.

As the block ended, the finance committee took the stage, announcing that by Dec. 13, DM had raised $124,116.

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