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Dance marathon remains hot, sets record despite weather

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Last weekend’s 15th annual Dance Marathon — cut short by a winter storm — raised preliminary proceeds of $115,000 to $120,000 for Turning Point Domestic Violence Services.

That exceeds the agency’s $112,500 goal and is a record for the marathon, said Whittney Loyd, Turning Point’s director of development.

Funds go toward Turning Point’s emergency shelter and prevention programming initiatives.

The marathon is Turning Point’s largest fundraising event each year, ahead of the Girlfriend Ride.

Dance marathon proceeds

represent about 7.5 percent of the agency’s annual revenue, according to reports.

The student-led dance had been scheduled to run from 6 p.m. March 1 to 6 a.m. March 2 at Columbus East High School.

A winter storm, however, is believed to have kept attendance down from the anticipated 800 students and compelled organizers to send the nearly 500 students who did attend home at midnight.

“Safety of the students was our first concern,” Loyd said.

She said although weather had an impact on turnout and the length of the dance, it didn’t

stop Turning Point’s mission of spreading information about dating and teen violence.

“The major focus of the event is on primary prevention and educating teens on healthy relationships, while also providing them with additional information and resources,” Loyd said.

She said it’s encouraging to see teens so focused on the issue of dating violence and wanting to be a part of the solution.

Most of the money raised by the dance came from students, who pay a $30 entry fee. Local firms and individuals also donated food, funds and prizes for the event, and 280 adult volunteers help make the event possible each year, Loyd said.

Loyd said organizers continue to total receipts from the event.

She said students who had raised money and planned to attend the dance but didn’t because of the weather may take those donations and pick up their T-shirts at Turning Point’s office in the United Way of Bartholomew County building at 1531 13th St.

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