Indie Spotlight: Atlas
I am sure you have seen them all across THON. Their bright pink fuzzy hats are a dead give away to who they are. We got a chance to talk to Dan Levy (the Atlas THON executive chair) and Dave Haneman (One of the THON weekend committee captains.)
OS: How many years have you been involved with THON? Also, in what ways are you involved with THON?
Dan: I have done THON for 3 years. During that time period I have been a member of Atlas for all 3. In my sophomore year, I was a member of the Atlas Donor Relation executive board. Now, in my junior year, I am the Atlas THON executive chairperson. I have also done 2 different THON committees.
Dave: This is my first year being involved in THON in any capacity. I am on the family relations committee for Atlas, a member of the THON weekend committee, and am the food captain for this weekend.
OS: What does your team do for THON?
Dan: Over the past year Atlas has been really busy with THON. We have had 4 fantastic canning trips. We have sent LOTS of THONvelopes. We have also had a record number of corporate contacts and corporate donations. Another aspect of THON that Atlas puts a lot of emphasis on is family relations. Over the past year we have got a lot closer to both our THON families.
OS: What is your favorite part of THON?
Dave: For me, it has to be spending time with the families. Just the entire feeling of being there in the stands with everyone, supporting your dancers and supporting the families.
Dan: Being there to support the families is also one of my favorites. Also observing the enthusiasm from everyone in THON. It keeps me motivated to stay involved in THON. Keeps me motivated to keep on trucking and raising money for THON.
OS: Why did you get involved in THON?
Dave: Its a great cause. Getting involved in THON is the best way to give back to the community that gives us so much.
Dan: I happened to live in Atlas my freshman year and it was just inevitable that I would join Atlas THON. I initially had no idea what it was, but after my first Atlas meeting and learning what THON was about, I realized that we should be honored to do THON. This is without a doubt the coolest opportunity to give back to the community. If I think back over my career at Penn State, it would feel incomplete if I had never participated in THON.
OS: How long will you be here this weekend?
Dave: I have been here since about 1 pm. It was all for the struggle to secure our place in the BJC! Apart from that I have left to get food for the team once or twice, but I aim to finish all 46 hours.
Dan: I got here at 5.30 pm. I wanted to be here much earlier but I had lots of last minute get-ready-for-THON stuff to get done. I plan to stay as long as I can.
OS: What song do you hope they play this weekend?
Dan: I hope they play “Be My Bad Boy” by Cascada. This has to be one of the coolest techno songs ever written.
Dave: “Stronger” by Kayne West.
OS: How would you rate your dance skills?
Dan: Grade A! I am also an expert in the robot.
Dave: I am definitely 10.5/10.
OS: What is the coolest thing you have seen this weekend?
Dave: Right at the end of the line dance when they are holding their diamonds to the sky. Just the way they keep holding them to the sky even after the line dance is over. It is such a striking and powerful moment.
Dan: When they played “Devil Went Down to Georgia”. The entire Atlas team broke out into insane fiddling and dance. The energy levels were so high. It was great.
OS: If you were a dinosaur what kind would you be? And why?
Dan: Triceratops – but I could just have easily had been a Stegosaurus.
Dave: Pterodactyl. It would be great to fly!
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About the Author
With no canning weekends held this year and canvassing eventually suspended as well, this year’s total is a testament to how committed THON volunteers truly are.
Totals aside, congratulations to every organization that volunteered with THON throughout this year to raise more than $10 million for the kids.
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