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about 8 months ago

How THON Keeps Its Dancers Fed

Snack Shack

Keeping 707 dancers non-delirious and well-fed throughout THON’s 46 hours is a charge of the pink Hospitality committee.

The nine meals and three “heavy snacks” the committee serve contain donated food from more than 50 distributors. The meals are served on the tables at the far end of the THON floor and dancers receive them in groups of 50, while the heavy snacks are carried around the floor by Hospitality members. Meals are served no more than four hours apart, and if the length does get to four hours, heavy snacks are served in between.

Hospitality Director Megan Renaut said all of Hospitality’s 10 committees are necessary to serve the needs of dancers and families. For instance, three committee members are needed constantly at the “snack shacks,” which serve food like pretzels and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to dancers whenever they want it.

Because all of the food THON receives is donated, it isn’t able to accommodate for dancers with dietary restrictions. Dancers can instead bring their own food that Hospitality stores for them and moralers deliver to them.

The three longest-tenured donators to THON are Subway, Gemelli Bakers, and Pepsi, Renaut said. But Hospitality can’t just serve any food – it needs to have the proper nutritional value.

“We push a lot of carbs,” Renaut said. “We want to make sure they also have vegetables and protein and they’re having sustenance, to be able to make it to the next meal without being hungry.”

THON - The IFC/Panhellenic Dance Marathon (THON), the most ubiquitous event on campus, has been in existence since 1973. THON currently benefits the Four Diamonds Fund at the Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center Children’s Hospital and has raised over $100,000,000 since its inception. Read more