UMass Boston psychology major Nora Kelso is asking her fellow students to spend a few hours dancing in the Campus Center next Saturday, Dec. 1, to help fund cancer treatment, research, and hospital bills for families of children with cancer.
For the second year in a row, Kelso and her group, UMass Miracles, is hosting a UMass Boston Dance Marathon to benefit Boston Children’s Hospital, which is part of the Children’s Miracle Network.
The dance marathon takes place in the Campus Center Ballroom from noon to midnight.
“We are very lucky to be able to come to college and have the opportunities we do,” Kelso said. “I think it’s really important to do something outside of your comfort zone. I am asking students to dance for those who can’t.”
Last year, more than 50 people came out to the event, raising about $6,281. Kelso would like to see at least 85 people sign up this year.
A DJ will feature different themes every hour, such as carnival, flashback, hoedown, and Caribbean. And each hour, there are different games and participants will learn new dance steps that are part of a larger routine that will be performed at the event’s conclusion.
“By midnight, everyone can do the dance,” Kelso said.
Participants will also have the chance to meet some of the children and families the marathon is benefiting. Free food and refreshments are served.
For Kelso, this cause is personal. Her 12-year-old cousin was treated at Children’s Hospital Boston before passing away. Kelso helped lead a dance marathon while she was a student at the University of North Florida and she hopes the UMass Boston Dance Marathon will continue to grow on campus.
She encourages people to come, whether they are professional dancers or cannot dance at all.
“You don’t need any dance skills to come to this event,” Kelso said. “I’m not a professional dancer. It’s just about being on your feet for 12 hours, standing up for those who can’t.”