Campus THON activities continue with fitness night, spaghetti dinner

January 16, 2013

With a month to go before the granddaddy of fundraising events, Penn State New Kensington is picking up the donations pace in January with a series of activities that supports Penn State’s annual dance marathon, aka THON. The schedule includes a fitness night, spaghetti dinner and tossing pies at your favorite professors.

The campus THON committee, headed by Kelsie Nury, is sponsoring a series of events in January to raise funds for the University-wide event that benefits the Four Diamonds Fund, whose goal is to fight childhood cancer, at the Penn State Hershey Children's Hospital. THON, formally known as Penn State Interfraternity Council/ Panhellenic Dance Marathon, culminates with a 46-hour, no sitting, no sleeping marathon from Feb. 15-19, at the University Park campus. Over the next four weeks, students from all Penn State campuses will be raising money for what is believed to be the largest student-run philanthropy in the world.

The fundraising cycle cranked up during the fall semester with two canning weekends, a zumba night and a spaghetti dinner. The spring semester opens at 5:30 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 17, with a Night of Fitness in the Athletics Center. Carol Sheffler, fitness instructor, will lead Zumba, and Pepsi Umberger, instructor in kinesiology at the campus, will direct the yoga activities that are geared to beginners (low impact) and veterans (high impact). The cost is $10 per person, and water, granola bars, fruit and other healthy snacks will be available to participants. Students are admitted for $5 with valid Penn State ID cards. In addition to the workouts, raffles for baskets of goodies will be offered throughout the evening.

The spaghetti dinner is set from noon to 6 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 20, at St. Margaret Mary Roman Catholic Church in Lower Burrell, Pa. The menu features salad, bread, tea/orange juice/water/coffee, spaghetti with meat sauce or plain marinara, and various desserts. Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for children under 10, and free for children 3 years old and younger. Takeout is available. Baskets of goodies will be raffled off.

Campus faculty will take one for the team at the annual “Pie Your Professor,” a one-sided food fight that is set from noon to 1 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 23, in Café 780. Students, aided by staff and abetted by the less courageous or more sensible faculty colleagues, can get in their professors’ faces with a healthy heaping of whipped cream. Although the distance for the throw is a challenging 3 feet, there is a 2 feet-11 inch margin of error. With those tolerances, collateral damage will be minimal.

Nury, a sophomore in the hotel, restaurant, and institutional management program has set a goal of $55,000, which would be the campus' high water mark. A graduate of Burrell High School, Nury represented the campus as a dancer at the 2012 marathon event and helped raise $50,437, second best total in campus history. The $52,000 in 2011 total is the campus standard. In the past three years, the New Kensington THON committee has collected more than $122,000 to support pediatric cancer patients, families and researchers. Since 2002, the total is $216,000.

For more about THON events, contact Nury at 724-462-1779 or or Lauren Blum at 724-334-6063 or


  • Campus students kicked off fundraising activities for THON during the fall semester.

    IMAGE: Penn State

(Media Contacts)

Last Updated January 16, 2013