Iowa State Dance Marathon: 4K for the Kids

Emily Karsten

In a race to the finish line, students and families are getting together to raise awareness and funds for Iowa State Dance Marathon as they host a 4K race throughout Iowa State’s campus on Sunday, Sept. 27.

The second annual 4K for the Kids is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m., with a morning full of activities; lawn games, miracle family stories, breakfast food, a live DJ and the 4K race, just to name a few. The Iowa State Dance Marathon 4K for the Kids marks an opportunity for students to support the cause that benefits University of Iowa Children’s Hospital.

“I think this 4K is an event that proves we are for the kids 365,” said Christian Jones, Iowa State Dance Marathon events executive co-director. “Last year’s 4K was the beginning of a long-standing tradition for Iowa State Dance Marathon.”

Iowa State Dance Marathon has become an influential part of the ISU campus. Celebrating its nineteenth year at Iowa State this coming January, the program has helped to change the lives of children and families treated at the Iowa Children’s Hospital in Iowa City.

The organization holds a weekend-long celebration every January to celebrate the families affected by Iowa State Dance Marathon, as well as the hard work and dedication put forth by its members. This year, the event will be held on Jan. 23 and Jan. 24, 2016.

“I think what I love most about Dance Marathon is that there are so many opportunities for everyone to get involved,” said Kaitlyn Aldrich, Iowa State Dance Marathon general co-director. “Whether you’re a family with a sick child in the hospital, an incoming freshman looking to be involved or a leader looking for more experience, Dance Marathon is an outlet for everyone.”

With an executive board of twenty students and a committee of just under two hundred, students feel strongly for the cause and what it stands for.

“I like the opportunity to be in an organization run solely by students that makes such a big impact,” said Sophie Hetherington, dancer relations committee member. “You see where all of your work is going and how it positively impacts others. I feel like I’m really making a difference.”

Iowa State Dance Marathon is more than a one-weekend event. With events like the 4K or hospital visits, students at Iowa State have made Dance Marathon a large part of their life. The organization is continually hosting events and opportunities for students to get to know the children of Iowa State Dance Marathon better.

Since joining the Dance Marathon movement five years ago, Iowa State Dance Marathon community outreach director Emily Beilke said, “The passion behind everyone involved has helped Iowa State Dance Marathon to continue growing and to continue giving back to children who really need it.”

To register for the 4K for the Kids or learn more about Iowa State Dance Marathon, visit its website at