Back in 1978, nearly 50 students came together at South Glens Falls High School (South High) to help raise money for local charities. The way they chose to raise money was by dancing, and in their inaugural year they raised over $1,500 and created something much more valuable that would last a long time. In fact, throughout the years, the South High Marathon Dance has grown considerably. In 2017, the SHMD raised over $823,000 and a total of $5.6 million dollars throughout the course of the event.
The money has been used to help out organizations like the Alzheimer’s Association, Cindy’s Comfort Camp, Glens Falls Hospital, Habitat for Humanity and so many more. The SHMD has helped people acquire organ transplants, motorized wheelchairs, and handicapped-accessible vans. The dance also sends terminally ill community members on vacations with their families. They’ve even paid for medical equipment at local hospitals.
The best part about the SHMD is its primarily organized by the students. A committee is formed every year, they are assigned to decide who the recipients will be. They also have another important decision to make and thats the costume party element and theme for the dance.
The SHMD raises money multiple ways — the dance itself lasts for 28 hours. During that time, vendors can sell snacks, raffle off 50/50 tickets, hold a silent auction, and they even operate a hair cutting booth and it goes to charity.
It’s one of the best local events in the area, and with only 3,100 students enrolled in the school, it’s truly spectacular what they’ve accomplished. This year’s event begins March 2 at 5PM and ends March 3 at 11PM.
A former colleague of mine and a graduate from South High has this to say about the SHMD:
If you can’t attend the event but would like to help out anyway you can, here’s a link to donate on their website.
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