They stood for six hours — sometimes dancing, sometimes singing karaoke or playing a round of ping-pong — but always on their feet while attempting to meet their goal in raising money for the Children’s Miracle Network.
More than 600 students at West Orange High School participated in the second Warriorthon, held Feb. 18 in the gymnasium. This year’s event nearly doubled the funds brought in at last year’s dance: $31,281.58 compared to $18,277.61 in 2015. The total was announced at midnight at the conclusion of the six hours.
Orange County Public Schools announced this was the highest amount raised for a high school dance marathon in the state.
The Student Government Association sponsored the West Orange dance marathon, and seniors Lauren Cobb and Paige Gravely co-chaired the event.
Contests were held throughout the evening, and winners were declared in doubles ping-pong (Adam Seybold and Matt Cobb), Hula Hoop (Jamie Sabella) and karaoke (Nikita Velkamin). Michelle McKenna was the highest fundraiser, with more than $1,200 collected.
Katie Karp, a senior at West Orange who has battled bone cancer, shared her story, as did another family whose two young daughters have autoimmune diseases. All have been impacted by Children’s Miracle Network and Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children.
Dance marathons are held at colleges nationwide, and high schools have begun hosting them, as well. West Orange teams with the KnightThon at the University of Central Florida.