UK’s DanceBlue dance marathon continues tradition, raises more than $1 million

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University of Kentucky students celebrated one of the school’s largest traditions Saturday.

DanceBlue raises money for the Golden Matrix Fund and cancer research.

This year, more than 300 students helped raised $1,011,115.49. The school has raised more than $17 million for the DanceBlue Kentucky Children’s Hospital Hematology/Oncology Clinic in previous years.

Students participated in the first dance marathon over Zoom because of pandemic restrictions.

“Just because the world might stop, cancer never does and neither does DanceBlue,” overall chair Allie Holt said.

Morale leaders Hayden Gooding and Alec Elmore led their breakout group in challenges and choreography for eight hours Saturday.

“It’s definitely been interesting to see how creative we’ve been able to be with this year’s marathon being virtual,” Gooding said.

At the top of every hour, they learned sections of one long, line dance they performed at the end of the marathon.

Fundraising and dancing aside, they know they’re doing it “for the kids.”

“We never try to focus on the number because, whatever we do raise, it’s going to help these kids and their families going through such a terrible time,” Holt said.

After hours and hours on their feet, dancers said the announcement of how much money was raised for cancer patients and their families is very emotional.

“We’re giving a kid another day, another chance to smile,” Elmore said.

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