The Start of Something New

Parkway Central teens kickstart Dance Marathon


Executive directors juniors Sophie Sokolik and Sydney Kolker leading a weekly Dance Marathon meeting. They are going over a Dance Marathon event hosted by St. Louis University and what they want to bring to PCH from their event. Photo by Rebecca Barnholtz.

Rebecca Barnholtz, Staff Reporter

“I saw it at Ladue and Clayton and I have a lot of friends involved in it there so then I knew I should bring it here,” Sokolik said.

When junior Sophie Sokolik saw what students at other local schools were doing to give back to the community and donate to The Children’s Miracle Network. These deeds inspired her want to bring Dance Marathon somewhere new.

Dance Marathon is a new organization that has been brought to Parkway Central this year. It is a nonprofit organization that raises money for The Children’s Miracle Network alongside SSM St. Louis Cardinal Glennon and St. Louis Children’s Hospital. It helps fund families with the opportunity to use different resources the hospital offers such as music or art therapy that insurance doesn’t cover.

Juniors Sophie Sokolik and Sydney Kolker wanted to bring the dance marathon here because of the value it holds in creating community and giving back.

“I wanted to bring it [Dance Marathon] to PCH because I thought that it would be beneficial because we don’t really have anything to do with helping outside of our community and it helps the greater good,” said Kolker.

To get the Dance Marathon going, Kolker and Sokolik needed a sponsor. They approached math teacher, Sarah Reeves for the role. Reeves thought it was a cool idea and wanted to help make the event the best it can be.

“I really like to support students in their passions and especially if its a shared passion.” said Reeves.
Kolker and Sokolik are now co-executive directors for the club with an entire executive board working with them to ensure planning runs smoothly.

“We just guide our executive board,” Sokolik Said.

“Also, we are in contact with the St. Louis regional manager of Dance Marathon with any questions and for general communication,” said Kolker.

But the executive board is truly where the magic happens.

“The executive board’s role is to plan the event itself, fundraisers, get sponsors, and much more,” Kolker said.

With seven committees and 27 other students involved, Sokolik and Kolker have begun planning the event and fundraising. The committees that make up the executive board are Morale, Publicity, Dancer Relations, Fundraising and Finance, Sponsorship and Catering, Event Operations, and Miracle Family Relations.

Morale committee: Emcees and teaches the morale dance, a dance that is taught to all attendees at the event and is performed at the beginning of each hour. Chair: junior Alexis Baumgarten Committee Members: senior Savannah Grasmick, juniors Fagan O’Connor and Hannah Krivelow.

Publicity: Helps run the social media accounts and is responsible for making posters/flyers for events. Chair: sophomore Mikaela Snitzer. Committee Members: juniors Gabby Abowitz and Elizabeth Wangley.

Dancer Relations: Responsible for recruiting and keeping in constant communication with dancers. Chair: sophomore Maddie Silk. Committee Members: junior Sami Qian and freshman Sarah Malter

Fundraising and Finance: Monitor the budget and manage expenditures and brainstorm and plan fundraisers. Chairs: juniors Sydney Albin and Grace Meier. Committee Members: junior Hannah Li and senior Gracie May.

Sponsorship and Catering: Responsible for contacting business to sponsor events, as well as find restaurants to cater at the actual dance marathon. Chair: senior Lexie Lander. Committee Members: senior Michelle Korenfeld, sophomores Brooke Kraizer and Maya Feldman, junior Makayla Morton and freshman Zoe Fritz.

Event Operations: They are in charge of logistics such as creating the event schedule, coordinating food, coordinating the printing of t-shirts and running dancer check-in. Chair: senior Rebecca Barnholtz. Committee Members: juniors Spencer Kessler and Irene Zhang, and sophomore Olivia Qian.

Miracle Family Relations: Responsible for inviting all families to our event, set up Miracle Mail at the event and spend the event getting all of the kids involved. Chairs: senior Blair Dubinsky and sophomore Emily Winograd.

With already raising nearly $800 raised from a recent Bread Co. fundraiser and bake sale, the Dance Marathon’s future for the upcoming weeks is bright.

The dance itself will be March 7 held here at PCH from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Make sure to sign up to be a dancer if you hope to be involved with the event. It will consist of around four hours of dancing, games, and different activities that immerse participants with the kids that the funds will be directly impacting. Each hour will have a different theme to it, with new games that connect to the theme. Once the link opens for dancers to sign up, one will be able to help raise funds and participate in getting donors as well as participating in different fundraisers.

“We want 150-300 people at the event and our goal is to raise at least $10,000,” Kolker said.

“I’m really excited to see our community come together and support children and families who are in need. I think it’ll be a really special evening,” said Reeves.