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THON Total Reveal Scream Breaks Our Decibel Meter App

For the length of THON 2014, we here at Onward State decided to keep track of just how loud the BJC really was. The opening countdown rung out at 99 dBA, setting the tone for an energized weekend. That total wouldn’t be surpassed until My Hero Zero took the stage, topping out at a whopping 103 dBA and doing what they do best: keeping the crowd and dancers pumped up.

From there on, a few moments would come close (James Franklin and Christian Hackenberg’s appearances on stage, cheers during Family Hour), but it wasn’t until seven-time THON band Go Go Gadjet, one of the best cover bands out there with a weekly performance each Wednesday at the Phyrst, and a group who has become a closing bell of sorts for THON weekend, got it going as the hours turned to minutes that the record was challenged. GGG got us all the way to 107 dBA with their inspired performance of various top-40 hits — including Luke Bryan’s Country Girl, their first country cover at THON — but we all knew that wouldn’t be the high point.

The final ten seconds, and subsequent “3…2…1…SIT DOWN!” got us up over the 100 mark again, and the total reveals for individual organizations produced some pretty great numbers themselves (both on our decibel meter and in dollars).The scream after the final reveal, however, shattered everything.

As it turns out, the app we were using maxes out at 110 dBA. The unified roar got to that easily, but because it was sustained, the app crashed, meaning we may have broken the 137.6 dBa world record for unified yell. We’ll never really be sure, but it’s better to believe, isn’t it? Either way, Penn State was loud enough to crash the 99 cent, 4.5/5 star reviewed decibel meter app we purchased for the weekend, and there’s props due for that. Maybe next year we’ll buy a real decibel meter, but for now, let’s just assume we hold an unofficial world record. Because why not?

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About the Author

Noel Purcell

Noel Purcell is Onward State's Features Editor. He's a senior Supply Chain major, but is going to law school at some point in the future and masquerades as a writer for now. He continues to disappoint his ancestors by being a complete Irish stereotype. His email is [email protected] because there were no other Noels before him. His ex-wife got the good half of his bio in the divorce settlement.


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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.

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