UI Dance Marathon To Support New Hospital

By Addison Speck, Reporter

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By Aaron Hepker

IOWA CITY, Iowa - For more than a decade, Dance Marathon at the University of Iowa has been raising millions of dollars to help kids with cancer. On Friday, Dance Marathon leaders made a new commitment to the U-I Children's Hospital. Dance Marathon at the University of Iowa keeps growing in numbers and growing in donations. University President, Sally Mason, said it gets better every year. "The generous support that our Dance Marathon provides to our children's hospital plays an important role in its success," Mason said.

Elyse Meardon was the executive director of the 2010 Dance Marathon. She said big numbers helped pushed them to jump on board with a new project. "Ad a result of our continued growth our organization was presented with a tremendous opportunity to be a part of the new dedicated children's hospital," Meardon said.

Each winter, hundreds of U-I students dance for 24-hours straight to money for kids with cancer. On Friday, Dance Marathon leaders announced a 5 million dollar commitment over the next decade for the new University of Iowa Children's Hospital. The 270 million dollar hospital will be an 11 story tower right near Kinnick Stadium.

In April, the Dance Marathon committee unanimously voted to jump on board in helping out. "As students we chose to allow all children to receive treatment at the University of Iowa Children's Hospital," Meardon said. "We want to keep up our foreign momentum to keep pushing the boundaries of knowledge, treatments and cures for our children. That's why a new children's hospital is critical," Mason said.

Dance Marathon leaders are confident students will meet the mark. "Of course we always want to raise money for our children and for our children's hospital, but I think this gives dancers the motivation to do the extra five dollars," Meardon said.

Many say this commitment will help provide a better future. "Our children's hospital and Dance Marathon means hope," Mason said. Groundbreaking for the new U-I Children's Hospital will be in fall of 20-12.

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