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[Live Blog] Penn State THON 2015: $13,026,653.23!

Welcome to the central hub of Onward State’s THON 2015 coverage. Follow along here for everything going on at the Bryce Jordan Center this weekend at the 43rd annual Penn State IFC/Panhellenic Dance Marathon.

Be sure to follow @THONwardState, @OnwardState, and check out our Facebook page for more of our coverage this weekend. For all of your THON Frequently Asked Questions, check out our comprehensive guide to THON. If want to watch a live stream of THON, click play atop this post.

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Sunday, February 22

And this year’s Penn State IFC/Panhellenic Dance Marathon total money raised is…

4:00 p.m. 5… 4… 3… 2… 1… DANCERS SIT!

3:55 p.m. The Executive Committee is singing and dancing onstage, which can only mean one thing… One last line dance and then we sit!!!

3:45 p.m. Go Go Gadget leaves on the groovy note of “Uptown Funk.” Only 15 minutes until our dancers get to sit and we find out how much we’ve all raised FTK!

thon 2015

3:30 p.m. The cell phone lights come out across the arena — it looks like a starry night inside the BJC. How beautiful!

go go gadget thon 2015

3:20 p.m. Go Go Gadget is singing “California Gurls” in honor of Katy Perry’s Left Shark — more importantly, the total reveal is only 40 minutes away!


3:15 p.m. There is, quite simply, no party like a THON party.

kids on stage thon 2015

3:00 p.m. Go Go Gadget takes the stage, and there is no perfect band to energize and pump up the dancers in the BJC than these guys.

go go gadget thon 2015

2:59 p.m. Happy eighth consecutive year at THON, Go Go Gadget! Can’t wait to pick up the spirit in the next hour before we see the total reveal!

thon 2015 bjc

2:57 p.m. Until the concert begins, we can read up on Stacy Forbes Bingler, who has been involved in so many different facets of THON, it’s almost difficult to keep up with her.

2:51 p.m. The lights stay lowered and everyone begins to start moving to the upbeat music as we move out of Family Hour and toward a concert from Go Go Gadget, the crowd favorite band, for the final hour of THON.

2:40 p.m. The Dancer Relations Captains take the stage to perform the hourly line dance, and everyone in the BJC is still clearly affected by the emotions of Family Hour.

captains affected during family hour thon 2015

2:39 p.m. Charles Millard, the founder of the Four Diamonds Fund, and his daughter grace the stage after everyone has watched the emotional “Celebration of Life” video. “You are also helping Chris’s dream come true,” Millard said, overcome with emotion. “And we thank you, Penn State!”

2:36 p.m. Family Hour may be a staple of each year, but it never fails to make us all pause for a moment and remember what this is all truly about.

2:34 p.m. “Angels Among Us” makes its yearly, emotional appearance.


2:13 p.m. The Celebration of Life video: we all celebrate the lives of those Four Diamonds children who cannot be with us today.

1:57 p.m. The final family to speak is the Brandon Loose family — “Our eleventh year at THON, and our seventh without Brandon,” said Brandon’s mother. She spoke of the costs that would be covered through the Four Diamonds Fund and with help from THON, and although the complications with Brandon’s neuroblastoma were difficult, their relationship with THON and their org, the Blue and White Society, helped to improve Brandon’s experience. “Brandon relapsed in 2006, two years to the day that he was initially diagnosed.” In October 2008, “Brandon earned his angel’s wings,” his mom said. “2009 was our first THON without Brandon — but everyone was so supportive.” She explained that while she cannot do any more things for her own angel, she can help those that are still here today. “On behalf of myself and my family, I would like to thank all of you.”

brandon loose's family at thon 2015

1:43 p.m. The Kayla Nakonechni family takes the stage. Kayla attended Penn State as an undergraduate — she was dedicated to school, and to its involvement with THON. Kayla’s mom reminisced on the first canning trip that occurred at their house — 25 people in a home with one bathroom. In the fall semester of her junior year, Kayla even had the opportunity to dance independently. It wasn’t until after her experience dancing in THON that she was initially diagnosed with stage four astrocytoma, which is brain cancer. “We continue to fight, and we thank all of you, each and every one of you, for your strength, courage, and determination,” said Kayla’s mother. Although she continues to fight cancer, she is officially a Penn State alum, graduating in December 2014. Kayla quoted, both for herself and aimed at the dancers on the floor, “Life is tough, but I am tougher.”

kayla nakonechni at thon 2015

1:41 p.m. As the Four Diamonds families continue walk across the stage, here’s a look at Franklin’s earlier speech to the THON crowd.

1:33 p.m. Each Four Diamonds family that was able to attend THON this year is walking across the stage, receiving cheers from the crowd and shaking the hand of Charles Millard, the founder of the Four Diamonds Fund.

1:18 p.m. The Josiah Graybill family speaks next. At the age of eight, it was discovered that Josiah had a tumor the size of a grapefruit in his lower abdomen. This would end up being rhabdomyosarcoma. His surgery lasted over eight hours, and he had to remain in his bed for an entire week. However, through the work of the Four Diamonds Fund and all of his efforts with chemotherapy, he only has one last test and meeting with his doctor, and he will be considered officially cancer-free. “There’s a popular saying that it takes a village to raise a child,” Josiah’s mother said. After thanking God, all of Josiah’s doctors, and their Penn State org Tri-State, she said that if she could, she would walk around shake the hand of every single person in the BJC. “THON on!”

josiah graybill family at thon 2015

1:04 p.m. The Daniel Testa family is the first to speak during Family Hour. When Daniel was eight months old, he was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, a rare type of cancer that affects only 600 children each year. However, through the help of the Four Diamonds Fund and THON itself, Daniel has now been off treatment for over four years. For the Testa family, “THON” is many people and organizations, who have contributed to the happiness and health of Daniel.”THON is all of the people jammed into the Bryce Jordan Center at this very moment… THON is all of the Penn State students who are associated with THON, who make sure that all Four Diamonds kids and their siblings feel like the most special kids in the world.” But most importantly for Daniel’s father, “THON is my son being able to stand here next to me as I make this speech.”

daniel testa family at thon 2015

12:59 p.m. Coach James Franklin enters the BJC arena, alongside Noah Benner, a Four Diamonds child. “We love him very much,” Franklin said of Noah. He spoke out toward the THON families and children, whether in the BJC or across the world, and he reassured them, “We have your back, and I wanna make sure you know that.” He talked about how his daughters have been saving in their piggy banks so they can donate to THON — and Franklin will meet their wish and donate $13,000 to THON this year. He ended by echoing his sentiments from the Pinstripe Bowl, after the incredible win: “If you wanna talk about Penn State’s culture, look around — this is Penn State’s culture!”

james franklin and family at thon 2015

12:50 p.m. Sue Paterno is here to celebrate with us!

sue pa at thon 2015

12:43 p.m. “Where Are They Now”: We learn of how far some Four Diamonds children have come, and how successfully they have beaten their cancer.

12:34 p.m. Of course, after showing off the last five line dances, we have to end the segment by doing the line dance from this year’s THON at least one more time.

12:30 p.m. Even in the passing of Eli Sidler, his powerful impact and legacy continue to live on and inspire.

12:27 p.m. “Government? Shut down for what!” The most recent line dance is recognized across the arena, as everyone in the BJC seems to be singing along or doing the dance moves. It’s a walk down memory lane for many today.

12:21 p.m. The line dance from 2013 received a big applause from the audience at the very start, and most of the dancers on the floor seem the know the moves. “Stomp, make the stands shake! / What? This is Penn State!”

12:16 p.m. More students can dance with this one, as the current seniors were freshmen when the 2012 line dance rolled out. More cheers resound as JoePa’s 409th win is mentioned, his legacy living on in the lyrics.

12:10 p.m. The 2011 Morale captains take the stage this time, with JoePa’s 400th win reference receiving a roaring applause in the BJC.

12:05 p.m. The first tradition of the final four hours is to celebrate the last five line dances. The Morale Committee from 2010 kicks off the memories and nostalgia, with lyrics ranging from the Hudson pilot to the stanky leg.

12:00 p.m. It’s noontime — we can officially begin our final four hours countdown!

11:56 p.m. As we begin to enter the final four hours, one senior reflects on this unique time for him — as this is the first THON he’s ever been to.

11:50 a.m. Only 10 minutes until we begin the most important countdown of the year!

11:47 a.m. After determining based on volume of cheering, the female captains are the winners of the line dance challenge. Well done, ladies!

11:42 a.m. Now for the female DR captains!

11:35 a.m. For the last line dance before the Final Four, the Dancer Relations Captains decided to split in half and see who does the line dance better: the male captains or female captains? We start with the male captains.

11:04 a.m. To go alongside both parts of Overheard In The Women’s Bathroom At THON, we present to you its counterpart: Overheard In The Men’s Bathroom At THON.

11:02 a.m. As the line dance comes to an end, we are now only five hours away from the THON total reveal, and less than an hour until the Final Four!

10:57 a.m. Dancer Relations Captains, you know where to go!

10:33 a.m. One young performer certainly embodied her character: after singing Katy Perry’s “Roar,” she address the crowd and defiantly said, “I’ll give you something to roar about… I’m cancer free!” The biggest congratulations to Savannah Keenan!

savannah kennan

10:32 a.m. If your THON weekend plans were affected by the sudden and potentially dangerous outbreak of chicken pox, we want to know what you’re doing in place of seeing each other primarily at THON.

10:09 a.m. THON With The Stars is underway! A variety show starring talented young performers has taken over the arena. One little star, Kaitlyn Good, even changed the chorus of “Party in the USA” to “Party in the BJC.”

10:00 a.m. It’s official: Only six more hours before we see the big reveal!

9:52 a.m. Dancer Relation Captains to the stage!

9:47 a.m. And blue, often a favorite among dancers and moralers, wins this year’s Color Wars!

9:35 a.m. In this edition of Natty Nittany, we look exclusively throughout THON, trying to find the dancers and supporters who have gone all out in their appearances.

9:24 a.m. We take a look around the BJC, in areas that some non-dancers may never get to witness — behind the scenes of THON.

9:15 a.m. Captains, to the stage!

9:08 a.m. As of around 9 a.m. today, the BJC has begun nearing its capacity. If you are planning on visiting the BJC at all today, we recommend that you start heading over sooner rather than later.

9:01 a.m. “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” by The Proclaimers sounds throughout the BJC as we enter a new hour. Only seven hours until the total reveal!

8:57 a.m. Orchesis Dance Company, another Penn State dance group, goes on after JaDhoom. The girls are sassy, and the music is a mashup of today’s biggest hits.

8:54 a.m. JaDhoom, Penn State’s only co-ed fusion dance team, entertains the audience with a dance routine that has both authentic music and dance moves with modern electronic music and hits, like “Don’t Drop That Thun Thun.” They are amazing!

8:53 a.m. In case you missed it, The Rockets performed earlier today, and brought some truly unique and exciting covers to the BJC.

8:46 a.m. For the fans of the first Overheard In The Women’s Bathroom At THON, you’re in luck: here’s Overheard In The Women’s Bathroom At THON, Part 2.

8:41 a.m. Miss anything from the Pep Rally last night? We have compiled the intro, performances, and finale, for your viewing pleasure.

8:33 a.m. “Stacy’s Mom”: one of those songs that catches everyone’s attention. Now the entire BJC arena is singing together on this exciting Sunday morning.

8:29 a.m. This is one of the last times that OPP will need to clear off and fully clean the floor of the arena.

bjc thon 2015

8:08 a.m. Just like that, one less hour separates us from the final total reveal. We find out in eight hours!

8:04 a.m. We did some investigative research into why THON, which used to be 48 hours long, decreased to 46 hours — the answer may surprise you.

7:54 a.m. Captains, to the stage!

7:44 a.m. The Rockets close out their set with a cover of “Faithfully” by Journey, to which the crowd put up their diamonds and slowly waved them from side to side. Then, their remix of “Don’t Stop Believin'” truly sent them on their way, and left everyone in an uplifted, energetic mood.

7:36 a.m. If you’re starting to get hungry on this final day of THON, we’ve compiled your the best options for breakfast food inside the BJC.

7:33 a.m. This electronic remix of “Let It Go” is the song of the hour, as The Rockets start off the chorus and the entirety of the BJC resounds the rest of it back.

7:23 a.m. How much can you fit in one of those little fanny packs? It may be more than you think. We went on a journey to discover the true holding power of the fanny pack.

7:20 a.m. The Rockets are in the midst of an electric mashup of early 2000s hits, like “Hot In Herre,” “Drop It Like It’s Hot,” and “Lose Yourself,” and everyone is loving each new addition, quickly singing along with the next song.

7:10 a.m. If there were any doubt before, it’s gone now: We are wide awake here in the BJC, and it’s all thanks to The Rockets’ version of ‘N Sync’s “Bye Bye Bye.”

7:06 a.m. In case you missed it: The band Table Ten took on the BJC earlier this morning with some softer rock jams.

7:02 a.m. The Rockets are taking it back a few years with “Sexy And I Know It,” and the crowd is loving it. And another hour is finished! Nine hours until we find out how much we raised FTK!

6:50 a.m. The Rockets take the stage, waking up the BJC as they crank out THON favorite “Livin’ On A Prayer” and a more rock version of “Shake It Off.” The BJC is already vibrant as the sun begins to rise and enthusiasm kicks up a notch.

bjc thon 2015

6:41 a.m. Dancer Relations Captains take the stage for another line dance!

6:21 a.m. To keep the supporters in the stands entertained and moving, THON Entertainment splits the arena into a dance-off: the whole right side will dance to Lady Gaga’s “Just Dance,” while the left side has “Don’t Stop The Music” to show off its skills.

6:10 a.m. In the dancer spotlight, we spoke with John Wortman, a College Republicans dancer selected through the THON lottery.

6:10 a.m. Captains, to the stage!

6:03 a.m. And just like that, we’re another hour closer to THON’s total reveal. Ten hours left, everyone!

5:56 a.m. Kayla Kroh, a soulful indie singer/songwriter from York, Pa., invites the crowd in a singalong of the always popular “Blank Space” by Taylor Swift and Meghan Trainor’s “All About Bass.”

5:55 a.m. And there’s the first cowbell of the day!

5:52 a.m. In another 10 questions of the day, we speak with the THON Chair of Club Tennis, Rebecca Sech, to learn more about the club and its Four Diamonds family.

5:48 a.m. In brightly colored leg warmers, the Tapestry Dance Company at Penn State show off their dances moves to some favorite classics, such as “Push It,” “Welcome To The Jungle,” and “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go.”

5:41 a.m. Penn State’s Singing Lions, a singing and dancing ensemble of the university, take the stage to perform boyband hit “Everybody (Backstreet’s Back),” as well as recent hits like Bruno Mars’s “Treasure” and One Direction’s “Best Song Ever.”

5:35 a.m. We talked to the Entertainment Director Jake Bramande about his involvement in THON, and Entertainment’s new role in the DJing of THON.

5:25 a.m. Dancer Relations Captains, to the stage! Yet another line dance, helping us properly kick off the last day of THON.

5:20 a.m. Table Ten, which has been the perfect early morning soft rock band, closes its set with a well-suited “Send Me On My Way” by Rusted Root mashed up with U2’s “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For.” The atmosphere inside the arena is slowly growing more energetic, partly due to the awesome concert.

5:13 a.m. As the sun slowly begins to rise over Happy Valley, the BJC is still lit up, barely reflecting off the recent fallen snow.

bjc sunrise snow

5:11 a.m. Not going to be in Happy Valley for the final hours of THON? Don’t worry! Here are a couple tips to make the Final Four hours as authentic as possible.

5:08 a.m. After scouting out the BJC, we rounded up the best shirts of this year’s THON weekend.

5:06 a.m. We check in with our resident Nittany Lion, and with only 11 hours left, his optimism and spirit is as high as ever. #PennStateProud

5:00 a.m. Just as the clock strikes 5 a.m., Table Ten begins its rendition of “Wagon Wheel.” Hang in there, THON — only 11 hours left until the total reveal!

4:45 a.m. Now, we’re granted some of Sugar Ray’s “Fly,” performed by Table Ten, and the feeling of the BJC is like a cool acoustic coffee shop alongside 15,000 of your closest friends.

4:39 a.m. One writer travels around the BJC to figure out exactly where all of the water fountains (or lack thereof) are located — the results are not in favor of short lines or always-full water bottles.

4:36 a.m. While Table Ten rocks some light jams throughout the arena, dancers play their own DIY version of whack-a-mole across the floor.

4:23 a.m. In case you missed it, here’s a recap of the My Hero Zero performance that energized the BJC earlier this morning.

4:20 a.m. Table Ten, a band very familiar to and in the hearts of many Penn Staters, takes the stage, energizing the early morning crowd at the BJC.

4:14 a.m. Considering the safety of everyone trying to attend the final day of THON, we have your end of THON weather report.

4:02 a.m. Captains, to the stage! Another line dance under our belt.

3:50 a.m. Slides of Strength are still fully underway, providing some of the last temporary relief that the dancers may receive until they get to sit in almost exactly 12 hours.

slides of strength 2015

3:20 a.m. Devon Werkheiser — our very own grown-up Ned and his Declassified Survival Guide — performed a short but sweet set, mentioning how his parents met at Penn State and closing his set with his much-anticipated “We Are!” chant.

3:09 a.m. We spoke with Boulevard, the organization best known around THON for its light-up letters, about the details of the org and why it’s involved with THON.

3:00 a.m. And yet another hour is behind us! 13 to go.

2:56 a.m. My Hero Zero’s set has featured plenty of crowd involvement, with “Sweet Caroline” and “Zombie Nation” coming in the last few minutes.

2:52 a.m. Org members in section 104 of the BJC, unbeknownst to them, had to move to the upper bowl in order to make room for Four Diamonds families.

2:51 a.m. Ever wonder what it takes to create the line dance? Dancer Relations captain Ally Zierold — who you’ll see front and center on stage every hour — knows it far too well. We caught up with her for a 10 Questions.

2:48 a.m. With 708 dancers standing for all 46 hours of THON, it can be tough to serve all of the dancers’ unique needs, whatever they may be, and feeding them is no exception. THON is now offering gluten-free options for dancers, a change from years past.

2:46 a.m. We snagged 10 questions with Ally Zierold, the THON 2015 line dance leader, on her involvement with THON and her creation of the line dance.

2:31 a.m. We caught up with special interest org Pillar to see how their THON has been so far.

2:19 a.m. Captains from BASD Mini-THON made the trip to Penn State for experience and inspiration in their own upcoming dance marathon.

2:16 a.m. Turn up.

2:09 a.m. THON favorite My Hero Zero is on the stage for an hourlong performance!

720x540.jpeg.c7834da256d14126a3f212ac1096fb20 2:00 a.m. While the last hour THON came and went, a lifelong bond was formed on the BJC floor with our first proposal of the weekend! A couple got engaged around 1:30 a.m. on Sunday morning.

1:55 a.m. When Julie Graham was chosen to dance in THON 2014, she was expecting knee-high socks, crazy costumes, and the most energetic 46 hours of her life. Little did she know that the weekend would change her life in more ways than one. Check out this THON Love Story.

1:42 a.m. Captains to the stage! It’a line dance time again as we near the end of Hour 32.

1:31 a.m. Ladies: B-bWl2OIUAA-Wbh

1:25 a.m. We have a proposal on the floor!!!

1:19 a.m. “If you would have come one song later it would have been something normal!” Here’s what dancers are listening to on the floor.

1:08 a.m. Captains to the stage for another line dance! 15 hours to go.

12:51 a.m. The big overnight performance, My Hero Zero, is still an hour away, but  Jason O. & Co. are on the stage setting up already.

12:50 a.m. Dancer Mail call has overtaken the floor, with every table covered in bags of letters from friends, Four Diamonds children, family members, and more. 12:47 a.m. “We’re going down, down in an earlier round!”

12:36 a.m. The annual THON pep rally featuring coordinated dances from various sports teams got the BJC going Saturday night with music ranging from the 70s to the 21st century.

12:30 a.m. Throw your diamonds in the air.

(Photo: Anthony Lestochi/Onward State)

12:23 a.m. Captains to the stage! Let’s line dance!

12:13 a.m. You’re tired. Your legs hurt, and you want to sit down. It’s time to remember why we dance. Here’s a letter of encouragement from our THON Editor Jessica Myers.

12:00 a.m. IT’S THON SUNDAY!!! 16 hours to go!!!


Saturday, February 21



11:44 p.m. We asked around the bleachers and Twitter if THON is living up to the hype. The consensus answer is a resounding yes.

11:40 p.m. Kappa Alpha Theta’s Sarah Tate knows what it’s like to be left out in the cold when attending THON. Literally. After missing THON the last two years, she’s dancing this year.

11:35 p.m. Following an exciting pep rally, we power-ranked the performances from Penn State athletic teams.

11:30 p.m. Spoken word poet David Gaines stole the show at THON’s talent show, claiming first place two musical performances that gave the poet a run for his money. We talked to David and gave him the Onward State 10 Questions treatment to learn a little more about his art, and what he loves about THON.

11:25 p.m. We scoured the BJC to find out how freshmen were enjoying their first THON.

11:16 p.m. “Elevate” by St Lucia is the 409th song of THON!

11:03 p.m. Captains to the stage!

10:55 p.m. Back to normal here at the BJC, with dancers still staying as energetic as possible entering night No. 2.

10:44 p.m. What a show. The cheerleaders and Nittany Lion came out and fired up the crowd, finishing off with a Sweet Caroline. Rock on, BJC!

10:27 p.m. After using the cheers of BJC to decide the winner, the first-ever Pep Rally trophy goes to men’s hockey! And the much-anticipated THON Pep Rally comes to an end for another year.

10:24 p.m. Four finalists are announced: football, men’s hockey, men’s soccer, and men’s gymnastics.

10:22 p.m. The three-time national champion Lionettes close out the Pep Rally, bringing about the loudest cheers.

10:18 p.m. Men’s gymnastics is met with great cheering. In white tank tops and pink headbands, Ludacris’s “Stand Up” gets the guys in the groove, popping and flipping before moving into “Run It.” The breakdancing and fancy footwork impress the crowd. They then pair up and dance to Shakira’s “Hips Don’t Lie,” before ending in signature flips, bringing the audience to a thunderous applause.

10:16 p.m. Women’s golf danced to a crowd favorite, “Pump It,” followed by “Lip Gloss,” before popping to some of Chris Brown’s older tune, “Run It.” Beyonce’s “Run The World” finishes out the set.

10:13 p.m. The women’s soccer team gets the BJC moving with some synchronized moving to Fergie’s “London Bridge,” “Shawty Get Loose,” and “Get Low.” They exit the 90s and enter the new millennium with their dance routine.

10:11 p.m. Women’s hockey takes the neon shirt and high ponytail approach, bopping across the stage in a cheery, fun tempo, before ending with the worm.

10:06 p.m. In cut-off jeans and construction boots, men’s soccer has booties shakin’ as they start off the dance with some favorites of the ladies, like “Feel Like A Woman” and “Jumpin’, Jumpin.'” They close the dance by nailing the classic Dirty Dancing lift and capturing the crowd’s heart!

10:04 p.m. Women’s lacrosse is next, and Katy Perry’s Left Shark makes a guest appearance! The theme of the night is 90s, as they grunge it out to “Let Me Clear My Throat,” before transitioning into “This Is How We Do It,” and finally “Can’t Touch This

10:00 p.m. Men’s hockey takes the stage, fresh off their Saturday night victory. “C’Mon Eileen” plays in the background as they give their best Lionettes impression, before transitioning into a sultry “Raining Men,” complete with bright pink umbrellas and shimmies galore. The crowd absolutely loved them, to say the least, especially as they threw up their diamonds at the end.

9:59 p.m. The fencing team is all slick moves and splits as they’re dressed to the nines, gettin’ down to Michael Jackson’s “Bad.”

9:56 p.m. Women’s field hockey dons body suits in all sorts of colors, each one of them a “Dancing Queen” in their dance routine.

9:56 p.m. Need to help a dancer friend, but you’re unable to make it on the floor? A Dancer Relations Committee Member provides some tips to supporting friends between the stands and the floor.

9:54 p.m. Our very own Pinstripe Champions take the stage, having their own dance-off to the Bee Gees “Stayin’ Alive,” and quickly shifting into the upbeat “Don’t Stop Til’ You Get Enough.”

9:49 p.m. Women’s volleyball throws it back disco style, sporting wild curly hair and bell bottoms to boot. The slow start of “Let’s Get It On” gets the crowd laughing and cheering.

9:48 p.m. We take a closer look at two independent dancers, Nikki Trofa and Casey Gallagher, and their journey to THON.

9:45 p.m. And the Pep Rally kicks off with women’s rugby! The catchy Jackson 5 tune gets everyone in a nostalgic mood.

9:42 p.m. Shouts of “We want the Lion!” take the arena by storm, and he gets everyone pumped up with some classic cheer-offs.

9:36 p.m. Sandy Barbour takes the stage of THON with some impressive and thrilling enthusiasm. “Absolutely amazing! My first THON!”

9:35 p.m. The theme of this year’s Pep Rally is “United We Dance.”

9:30 p.m. Get a behind the scenes scoop of Hospitality serving the Four Diamonds families.

9:23 p.m. Leah and Colleen Patrick are the younger sisters of an incredibly THON-passion family — and are keeping the legacy alive.

9:17 p.m. Courtney O’Bryan’s parents speak to the BJC, reminiscing on her legacy and present the volunteer award to an outstanding member of Atlas.

8:53 p.m. THONing With The Stars just wrapped up, and DCRM has everyone on their feet for the line dance!

8:32 p.m. Looking like Taylor Swift herself, Cora Beyer performs “Long Live” accompanied by Phi Mu and Phi Kappa Tau.

8:29 p.m. The football team is back stage warming up for tonight’s pep rally.

8:26 p.m. Members of Tetra have the whole audience singing along to “Steal My Girl.”

8:17 p.m. THON Child Addy Machemer knows Staters gonna State, State, State. and wows the crowd with her rendition of “Shake It Off.”

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8:10 p.m. The Lion certainly isn’t showing any signs of fatigue as we approach the 27-hour mark.


8:09 p.m. Delta Chi and Kappa Kappa Gamma remain in high spirits, despite an eventul day for the group.

8:08 p.m. We’ve rounded up the most unique costumes around THON.

8:06 p.m. THONing With The Stars Is Underway on stage at the BJC!

8:05 p.m. Hospitality committee members are rolling out meals for dancers.

8:04 p.m. Out of all the wacky outfits dancers and students are wearing, a bold few are rocking some sweet jerseys.

8:01 p.m. We power ranked the best toys around the BJC.

7:52 p.m. Dancer Relations Captains to the stage! You can feel the excitement in a jam-packed BJC as the Variety Show comes closer.

7:05 p.m. And the 2015 Homecoming Theme is…“A Legacy To Shape The Future!”

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6:59 p.m. The Homecoming Executive Committee is now on the stage, ready to present the theme!

6:54 p.m. Finally, The Lion Ambassadors, winners of the Homecoming Talent Show, will take us through a journey of Penn State history.

6:50 p.m. Next up is the Penn State Dance Alliance and Theta Chi, who will dance for the crowd. The theme reveal is closer!

6:47 p.m. Homecoming’s talent show is underway with a performance of “Drops Of Jupiter” from sisters of Alphi Chi Omega. They’re awesome!

6:40 p.m. Another line dance wraps up, and the 2015 Homecoming Executive Committee is on its way to the stage to announce the 2015 theme. Last year’s was “Honor the Purpose, Carry the Pride.”

6:35 p.m. Dancer Relations captains to the stage!

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6:31 p.m. Lenina Crowne rocked the BJC with their performance of crowd favorites including Outkast’s ‘Hey Ya!’

6:29 p.m. The BJC just erupted into a “We Are” chant following the Bungee Jumpers performance.

6:24 p.m. The Bungee Jumpers are electrifying the BJC with quite the routine to Walk The Moon’s ‘Shut Up and Dance’ and Bruno Mars’ ‘Uptown Funk.’

6:20 p.m. The Bucks County Bungee Jumpers are taking the stage to perform a jump roping routine.

6:18 p.m. Mr. and Mrs. Dancer Relations are now doing their best Sia impression to ‘Chandelier,’ wig and all.

6:15 p.m. Mr. and Mrs. Public Relations are now rapping their remix of Chiddy Bang’s ‘Kids.’

6:09 p.m. Dancer Relations captains to the stage!

6:05 p.m. Video: Donors cut their hair earlier for Wigs For Kids.

5:58 p.m. One last song for Lenina Crowne with ‘Hey Jude’ with the band bringing up a dancer to play the tambourine.

5:55 p.m. Lenina Crowne is finishing up their set with a THON-appropriate song in ‘Lean On Me.’

5:48 p.m. The BJC has some energy as Lenina Crowne moves into Third Eye Blind’s ‘Semi-Charmed Life.’

5:40 p.m. Monarch FTK is attending its second THON and already has a family: the Keisters.

5:36 p.m. The BJC has started a sing-a-long to the theme from ‘The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air!’

5:30 p.m. Which committee would you pick if you weren’t chosen to dance? We asked some of the dancers what they would do.

5:25 p.m. Lenina Crowne has brought a nice oldie to the BJC in The Beatles’ ‘Twist and Shout.’


5:21 p.m. The THON Fashion Show allowed Four Diamonds children to strut their stuff. Check out our video of the event.

5:19 p.m. Lenina Crowne is rocking the BJC with The Killer’s ‘All These Things That I’ve Done.’

5:15 p.m. Receiver Matt Zanellato has made it his mission to get the football team more involved in THON.

5:10 p.m. Lenina Crowne has hit the stage starting off with Tom Petty’s ‘American Girl.’

5:06 p.m. THON has reached the halfway point. Here’s a recap of the last 23 hours.

5:00 p.m. THON has hit the halfway point! Dancers are still holding strong on the BJC floor.


4:54 p.m. Lenina Crowne is setting up the stage for their upcoming performance to pump up THON as we head into a lull.

4:46 p.m. A group of DCRM’s are spontaneously going through the line dance with their dancers on the floor.

4:40 p.m. Dancers were just reminded to stretch and stay hydrated as we get further into THON.

B-ZhZeHIMAAnzQh 4:35 p.m. Dancer Relations Captains to the stage!

4:33 p.m. The Water Polo Teams are celebrating their THON child’s final chemotherapy treatment this weekend.

4:25 p.m. The Blue Band Drumline is back to pump up the BJC with a rendition of ‘Let’s Go State.’

4:20 p.m. The wave just overtook the BJC as THON is almost 24-hours old.

4:12 p.m. The line outside the BJC is getting longer as more people brave the cold to get inside of THON.


4:05 p.m. We asked sign holders throughout the BJC who they’re reppin’ at THON.

4:02 p.m. Rihanna’s ‘We Found Love’ blares across the BJC with a “Diamond Cam” on the video board.

3:45 p.m. OPP is mopping the floors for the second time today. Thanks for keeping the floors clean!

3:38 p.m. Following the incident earlier, KKG and DChi had their floor passes temporarily suspended.

3:28 p.m. Their letters are hard to miss: we made a list of things as large as Delta Upsilon’s letters.

3:22 p.m. The Lion joins people donating their hair on stage.

3:18 p.m. Hairstylists are on the stage, preparing to cut volunteer’s hair for Wigs For Kids.

3:11 p.m. Whiplash, a competitive hip-hop dance group, now on the stage!

3:07 p.m. Altoona’s Josh Johnson and the Ram Squad are on stage!

3:05 p.m. 

2:59 p.m. Here’s your fun fact for this weekend: Pope John Paul II gave THON his official blessing in 1983.

2:57 p.m. Four Diamonds Direct Charles Millard called Dancer Relations Captains to the stage!

2:51 p.m. We updated our interactive map to show where Penn Staters and THON enthusiasts are keeping up with the festivities all around the world.

2:45 p.m. Herb Hand is a man of many skills. Here he is free-styling to the football team’s THON families inside Lasch.

2:43 p.m. Pistol Peg brought a country twang to the stage of the BJC.

2:40 p.m. A former THON dancer, Penn State grad still gives to Four Diamonds using his camera.

2:36 p.m. It’s time for a dance off! The right side will dance to the Black Eyed Peas and the left will break it down to MC Hammer.

2:30 p.m. The watergun fights get more intense by the hour.

2:23 p.m. The tutus, they’re everywhere! We found the 10 best tutu outfits exploring the concourse.

2:15 p.m. Penn State football is greeting its THON families in Lasch. The team formed a tunnel as the families walked in.


2:00 p.m. 20 hours down!!! We’re nearing the halfway mark here at THON while rock band Pistol Pete treats the crowd to some tunes.

1:47 p.m. Five years of line dances: Which one comes out on top? We took the time to power rank the most recent ones.

1:34 p.m. For many THON goers, nails are an important part of their event outfits. Here’s the best nail art that we found at THON.

1:22 p.m. THON is shrouded in mystery, and the biggest of them all is that big, black curtain shielding the upper level behind the stage. We investigated.

1:04 p.m. Garden State Radio took to the stage on Saturday afternoon, playing an electric set that livened the crowd at the BJC.

1:00 p.m. 19 hours are in the history books. Time flies when you’re having THON.

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12:50 p.m. Captains to the stage!

12:43 p.m. If you can’t get enough of the line dance, we have just what you need: an up-close video of the DR Captains leading it. Take a look.

12:35 p.m. There’s nothing quite like the bird’s eye view of THON that this child has.


(Photo: Dana Lipschutz/Onward State)
(Photo: Dana Lipscutz/Onward State)


12:20 p.m. If you stay at THON for long enough, the food can get pricey. Go with these strategies to dine on a budget.

12:07 p.m. It’s time for the 2015 THON Fashion Show! Four Diamonds child Victoria Smith is rocking a zebra-print wheelchair with a fuzzy, pink Atlas hat on the back. She pulls it off, too.

11:57 a.m. Did you forget to write dancer mail? You can stop by Portals 26 or 31.


11:50 a.m. “Smells Like Teen Spirit” finishes off an electric set from Garden State Radio. Andddd… DR Captains to the stage!

11:43 a.m. “Basket Case.” “Song 2.” “My Own Worst Enemy.” “Semi Charmed Life.” You really can’t go wrong with this set.

11:40 a.m. It doesn’t have a Four Diamonds family yet, but new sorority Phi Sigma Sigma is in the #FTK spirit at its first THON.

11:39 a.m. And there’s the inevitable “Blank Space” cover.

11:31 a.m. “Oh, baby, you! You got what I need! And you say he’s just a friend!” Garden State Radio plays one throwback and boom, we’re right into “Let Me Clear My Throat.”

11:28 a.m. After gaining an extra dancer, this year’s THON has shown how much Boulevard has grown since its inception in 2011.

11:20 a.m. If band performances at THON were a competition, then Garden State Radio would be winning. Classics like “Poison” by Young MC and “This Is How We Do It” by Montell Jordan are really heating things up at the BJC.

11:11 a.m. Robin McCabe’s job at THON is passing out free Chapstick and bracelets to THON-goers, but being here is much more than that for the Four Diamonds Fund employee and mother of a Penn State senior.

11:06 a.m. As we near the 18 hour mark, it’s normal for those who have been in the stands supporting the dancers to get tired. Have no fear though, here at Onward State, we’re all about helping out and sharing our nuggets of wisdom with you, so we’ve compiled some energy-boosting solutions for your current state of tiredness.

11:00 a.m. With 17 hours in the books and the first afternoon of THON 2015 rapidly approaching, Garden State Radio is on the stage with the third band performance of the weekend. They pop-rock is playing covers of Top 40 songs, which seems to be a welcome reprieve from the classic rock/alternative played by their predecessors.

10:49 a.m. The Big Uglies and Majorettes have taken to the floor, hopefully giving dancers an energy boost this morning.

10:40 a.m. What happens when you attach a GoPro to a hula hoop and give it to THON dancers? There’s only one way to find out, so we did. Check out the video.

10:36 a.m. THON going up… on a Saturday.


(Photo: Zach Berger/Onward State)
(Photo: Zach Berger/Onward State)


10:32 a.m. Captains to the stage!

10:23 a.m. 10 seconds off your feet with several hands massaging your aching body is a dancer’s little slice of paradise in the BJC — that is, if paradise tasted like baby powder. But what about the masseuses who work tirelessly to make the dancer’s brief reprieve everything they imagined? We give you: nine things that go through a masseuse’s mind during slides of strength.

10:19 a.m. A winter storm is headed for State College and will bring up to a half-foot of snow. Be careful traveling to and from the Bryce Jordan Center, folks.

10:16 a.m. Just announced: The 2015 Greek Week theme is… Legend of the Greeks!

10:12 a.m. Are You Smarter Than A Thon Chair? is taking place on stage. A group of Four Diamonds children are currently destroying the chairs.

10:03 a.m. In an amazing feat, Kappa Kappa Gamma and Delta Chi were able to move their entire THON organizations across the BJC in search of more space and a closer view.

9:55 a.m. We tracked down two freshmen out of the 708 dancers that are on the floor this weekend – practically a needle in a haystack in the chaos in the BJC.

9:50 a.m. Breakfast for dancers and a classic THON performance from local bar band Lowjack provided plenty of entertainment for dancers this morning.


9:37 a.m. Over 15,000 students are involved with THON, but that leaves 25,000 others who choose not to participate in the big weekend. We want to hear your stories. Why don’t you THON? Do you get negative reactions? What are you involved with instead?

9:20 a.m. Hats are all the rage at THON, but there are plenty of great masks showing up in the arena.

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9:07 a.m. Nothing says good morning like a piping hot grilled cheese!

8:59 a.m. Lowjack thanks the crowd being such a great audience. The band is closing its set with another crowd pleaser, “One Last Dance With Mary Jane.”

8:56 a.m. We talked to the parents of a dancer about their experience at THON and how they’re supporting their daughter this weekend.

8:47: a.m. “This song makes me thing of you, THON,” Lowjack singer Jason Davoli says before launching into Tom Petty’s “I Won’t Back Down.”

8:40 a.m. It’s officially All U Hour here in the BJC! The next hour will spotlight all 19 Commonwealth campuses.


8:39: a.m.  Lowjack addressed the crowd before getting everyone dancing to “Mr. Brightside.” “We’ve done this a couple of times and every time it’s bigger and better.”

8:34 a.m. Lowjack has the crowd singing along to their rendition of “Jumper.” 8:25 a.m. As a sophomore, Dan Ellman is one of THON’s youngest dancers.

8:23 a.m. Sure, it might not look that cool. But sitting in your own row at THON has its benefits! One of our writers explains.

8:21 a.m. Lowjack is playing crowd favorites like “Sweet Caroline” with its own twists. You won’t hear a better “Devil Went Down To Georgia” than Lowjack’s.

8:14 a.m. Two former THON leaders just couldn’t enough of THON, and are now dancing in THON 2015 as alumni. 

8:07 a.m. Lowjack followed that up with “Shipping Up To Boston” and “Ants Marching,” a classic performance. They’re waking the BJC up on this Saturday morning!

8:02 a.m. Veteran band and Onward State favorite Lowjack is performing at its fifth THON. It’s started things off with a cool rendition of “Seven Nation Army.”

7:57 a.m. The first Mail Call is underway in the BJC!

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7:39 a.m. Penn State’s athletic training club contains the unsung heroes of THON. Normally used to heal the pains of athletes, this week they go to work on dancers. 

7:34 a.m. Mike The Mailman took to the stage to tell the dancers they have lots of packages, and that, of course, he loves them. Meanwhile, OS favorite Lowjack is getting ready to play.

7:22 a.m. The Urban Dance Troupe’s stage tonight is the entire BJC, as its members are circling the floor and encouraging people to dance with it.

7:16 a.m. The Nittany Lion is dancing in his suit, and doing some great morale work as a result.

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7:05 a.m. THON is the one place where it is completely acceptable to wear a fanny pack — and here are the best of the weekend.

6:53 a.m. We (figuratively) sat down with an Ohana executive to talk about the org’s plans for the big weekend.

6:47 a.m. Looking for your friends at THON? We’ve compiled the locations of orgs, sororities, and fraternities in the BJC.

6:43 a.m. We went on a mission to find out how dancers stay focused and have fun during the grueling 46, with activities ranging from simply throwing a beach ball around to crafting jellyfish out of coffee filters and ribbon.

6:37 a.m. Mike the Mailman stopped by the BJC bright and early!


6:34 a.m. Hats will always be a classic staple of THON — and we found some of the coolest ones.

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6:20 a.m. He’s the hero THON deserves, and also the one it needs right now!


(Photo: Zach Berger/Onward State)
(Photo: Zach Berger/Onward State)


6:15 a.m. Spirits are high as THON ’15 reaches the 12-hour mark.

6:10 a.m. Just because you aren’t an official THON dancer doesn’t mean you can’t stand for 46 hours FTK. We caught up with one Atlas member who’s doing just that, making her an official, unofficial dancer.

6:06 a.m. Too. Much. Information.


6:00 a.m. Happy 12 hours! We’ve made it through half a day of THON 2015!


Photo: Zach Berger/Onward State
Photo: Zach Berger/Onward State


5:40 a.m. Penn Staters have some awesome THON tattoos. We compiled some of the best.

5:35 a.m. Dancer Relations Captains, to the stage!

5:27 a.m. It’s already breakfast time for some dancers!

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5:19 a.m. Ultra-talented dance group RAM Squad has taken to the stage, captivating the crowd. THON 2015 is entering its first morning!

5:11 a.m. We wouldn’t be Onward State if we didn’t do an Overheard! Check out some of the interesting things we heard during Slides of Strength.

5:04 a.m. Why do you THON? Attendees are again sharing why they THON using #instaTHON.

4:51 a.m. Isn’t THON beautiful?

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4:38 a.m. A freshman and an editor take a look at THON 2015 from two very different perspectives, one with fresh eyes and the other a veteran of the event.

4:25 a.m. From mohawks to diamonds, we take a look at some of the best hairstyles seen throughout the Bryce Jordan Center this weekend.

4:19 a.m. We’re already 10 hours into THON. Check out our video highlight.

4:16 a.m. Through the crowd peaks a lone tower of colorful cardboard boxes. Giant Jenga has begun!


4:08 a.m. Timber Count: 2. It’s only just begun.

4:00 a.m. Hour 10 is over! It’s 4 a.m. and the BJC is still rocking.


3:40 a.m. VIDEO: Watch as we send a dancer through the Human Tunnel at THON armed with nothing more than a GoPro.

3:35 a.m. In the words of Sia, slightly altered for the line dance: “1, 2, 3… 1, 2, 3… Stretch.”

Photo: Jack Lukow/Onward State
Photo: Jack Lukow/Onward State


3:21 a.m. John Buccigross, is, plainly, the man. Tonight, he got to see his first THON.


3:20 a.m. Whiskey Business was the first band to play a full set, taking the stage for an hour of classic rock and modern hits. They were a hit, to say the least.

3:16 a.m. We talked to some Rules and Regulations Committee members to find out the most commonly asked questions during the first night of THON weekend.

3:12 a.m. We assembled an interactive map to show you where people are keeping up with THON from around the world.

3:05 a.m. We’ve reached double digits as we enter Hour 10 of THON 2015! If you learn anything at THON, it should be that cows and polar bears can coexist peacefully.


2:57 a.m. A walking taco and a smile: THON committees work concessions stands throughout the BJC and let the good times roll.

2:54 a.m. The blow-up red dinosaur that’s been circulating the floor is actually an experienced dancer. Read more about him, or her, or it… right here!


2:44 a.m. The set closes with a “Hey Jude” cover and it’s time for another line dance!

2:32 a.m. Whiskey Business’ set is coming to a close, with the crowd singing along to The Beatles and Katy Perry.

2:12 a.m. Whiskey Business is about halfway done a very enjoyable set. It’s covered some rock greats like John Mellencamp and The Rolling Stones, and the dancers are jamming along.

1:55 a.m. This set is filled with crowd-pleasers from “Use Somebody” to “Hard To Handle”. There’s really something for everyone here.

1:48 a.m. The first scheduled band performance of the weekend is here, and it’s Whiskey Business, a local rock group comprising of four students. They’re playing some classics like “Baba O’Riley” and “All The Small Things.” Plenty of dancers have packed the front of the arena and surrounded the stage.

1:45 a.m. Ever wondered which songs are the most played at THON? We’re compiling a master playlist to answer that question. Check out the top songs from the first night.

1:30 a.m. Whether they’re Hawaiian-themed or lime green, the Greek and org letters of THON 2015 are colorful and eye-catching.

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1:21 a.m. Captains to the stage!

1:12 a.m. Check out our full recap of THON’s Got Talent. We’re into the early morning hours at the Bryce Jordan Center, but dancers look to be energized and in high spirits.

1:00 a.m. We forgot to tell you that the winner of THON’s Got Talent 2015 is…poet David Gaines! Seven hours down, 39 to go.

12:50 a.m. The Nittany Lion looks pretty darn good as a THON dancer. Read about Mike Valania here.


12:39 a.m. Need some help understanding the more obscure references in the line dance? Who is Odell Beckham Jr.? Why is Mrs. Doubtfire mentioned. We break it down in case you aren’t that basic.

12:33 a.m. The latest performer in THON’s Got Talent had some technical difficulties with his guitar, but no harm, no foul as we’re back up and running.

12:22 a.m. Gaines’ second poem was dedicated to his little sister, who passed away. He finished his performance: “Throw your diamonds up high. Let them shine in the sky. Let them shine in your lives and illuminate the world wide.”

12:20 a.m. The tradition of the floor pass system falling apart shortly after the dancers stands up has continued to 2015!

12:14 a.m. THON’s Got Talent is underway on Saturday morning. So far, we’ve heard Club Croquet play a cover of Coldplay’s “Yellow” and David Gaines do what we think was an acapella rap. Or a slam poem. Hard to tell.

12:07 a.m. Have you seen Atlas’ gigantic fuzzy hat? It took a Four Diamonds mother three weeks to make.


12:00 a.m. Happy Saturday, THON! Six hours of non-stop dancing are in the books!


Friday, February 20

11:50 p.m. THON dancers look to be in high spirits as we approach

11:40 p.m. Beatboxer JZizz just finished up a performance featuring some looping and reggae.

11:25 p.m. A child did his best Joe Paterno impression while another break-danced to “Come On Eileen.”

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Photo: Ted Hozza/Onward State


11:15 p.m. Penn State’s Sign Language Organization is now signing to Taylor Swift’s ‘Shake It Off.’

11:01 p.m. We’re now into Hour 6 and the BJC is fairly packed even at night.


10:50 p.m. Captains to the stage! We’re nearing the end of Hour 5.

10:48 p.m. It’s getting to be that time of Friday night when things get a bit monotonous. If you’re in the crowd and need something to keep you occupied, we put together a THON 2015 I Spy.

10:46 p.m. We found the 10 loudest organizations at THON.

10:40 p.m. Sigma Kappa THON Chair Alyssa Rubenstein tells us why she’s for the kids. (And John Stamos is for Sigma Kappa, so there’s also that.)

10:32 p.m. The first performance of THON 2015 came courtesy of the Penn State Thespians and dance group Ambitions, which performed at the event for its first time ever.

10:25 p.m. Dancers throw up the finger in support of Joe Paterno’s restored wins:

Photo: Alex Bauer/Onward State
Photo: Alex Bauer/Onward State

10:17 p.m. A dancer from the Blue & White Society has the unique experience of celebrating his birthday and THON at the same time.

10:15 p.m. A $5 THON raffle can win you a trip to Europe among other attractive prizes, courtesy of the Penn State Alumni Association.

9:56 p.m. Dancer Relations captains to the stage! We’re four hours into THON 2015.

9:52 p.m. The colors at THON 2015 are brilliantly vibrant as always.

Photo: Zach Berger/Onward State
Photo: Zach Berger/Onward State

9:40 p.m. We spoke to some dancers to hear their thoughts on the 2015 Line Dance. Sal Liberto said, “I like the references to other songs written in, especially ‘We Dem Boys.’”

9:20 p.m. We’re just out here empowering dreamers. What are you doing with your Friday night?

Photo: Alex Bauer/Onward State
Photo: Alex Bauer/Onward State

9:10 p.m. Lost in the BJC concourse? Wondering where to find the Lost & Found or a donation station? Here’s a comprehensive, portal-by-portal guide to everything in the Bryce Jordan Center, from bathroom to barbeque food.

8:55 p.m. Wondering what the THON dancers are eating tonight to get them energized for the long night ahead? Nothing much. Just some Dickey’s BBQ Pit.

8:46 p.m. We have some early dancer/DRCM bonding at the BJC. Onward State’s own Alicia Thomas is giving a piggy-back ride on the floor.

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8:36 p.m. For Four Diamonds Director Suzanne Graney, coming to THON every year is a homecoming of sorts.

8:32 p.m. Dancers are getting better at the line dance already.


8:11 p.m. This group of dancers was all smiles while relaxing pre-THON.


7:51 p.m. We power-ranked the Top 10 lyrics of the 2015 Line Dance. It’s no surprise that the line on JoePa’s 409 wins came in at first.

7:45 p.m. Kutztown-based Pretzel Revolution opened at the Bryce Jordan Center for THON, where it will stay for at least three years.

7:34 p.m. “Dancer Relations captains to the stage!” The first full Line Dance after the hour-long lesson is over and dancers are now mingling on the floor, passing around beach balls and, well, dancing!

7:26 p.m. Stop by Gate 31, the home of the THON Museum, to sign the 2015 THON Memories Guest Book with your favorite memory.

7:22 p.m. “For the dreamers all year long / We Are! Penn State Strong.” Dancer Relations captains are still teaching the Line Dance during the second hour.

Photo: Morton Lin/Onward State

7:06 p.m. From over $114 million raised to over 48,000 bottles of water and Gatorade drunk during THON 2014, there are plenty of stats involved in the big weekend. Here’s THON by the numbers.

7:00 p.m. A perfect sunset falls behind the BJC as we surpass our first hour of THON.


6:40 p.m. Dancer Relations captains are on the stage teaching dancers the line dance lyrics. The most popular line by far has been:

“Barbour, Barron are on board / 409, wins restored!”

6:28 p.m. ‘Whoop there it is!’ Here are the lyrics to this year’s line dance.

6:25 p.m. Dancer Relations Captains to the Stage!

6:16 p.m. The Hope Express has entered the BJC after their 135-mile journey from Hershey over the last day.

6:06 p.m. Reality star Khloé Kardashian tweeted out support for all participants of THON.

6:00 p.m. Dancers are on their feet!

5:57 p.m. The THON Executive Committee is taking the stage to kick off THON 2015.

5:47 p.m. Hannah Richardson sang a beautiful rendition of John Lennon’s ‘Imagine.’


5:45 p.m. Dancers stand in 15 minutes.

5:39 p.m. Club Cheer is finishing off the pre-THON entertainment with a routine to pump up the dancers.

5:32 p.m. Penn State’s resident tap dancer Josh Johnson is getting the pre-THON crowd pumped up along with the Blue Band Drums. Dancers stand in 30 minutes.

5:24 p.m. Gate A opened and the scanned wristband system was quickly abandoned. It appeared to be a logistical nightmare and didn’t last past the first 50 entrants.

5:17 p.m. Dancers are enjoying their final hour of relaxation, sitting throughout the floor ahead of THON’s 6 p.m. start time.


4:57 p.m. With just about an hour to go before the dancers stand, here’s a reminder about WHY we dance.

4:46 p.m. There are some fog machines pumping in plenty of blurriness at the Bryce Jordan Center, and it’s honestly a little much.

4:43 p.m. We are putting together our very own Snapchat story over the course of the weekend. Send us your best snaps to our account and we’ll put them in a post.

4:42 p.m. THON’s website has crashed, but you can still donate at an alternative link.

4:33 p.m. You can check out a list of all 708 dancers here!

4:30 p.m. The dancers have made the trek to the Bryce Jordan Center and have passed through the floor, heading through the human tunnel! 90 minutes to THON 2015.


4:20 p.m. Charles Millard, Four Diamonds founder Charles Millard was on hand for a pre-THON press conference as he attends his 37th THON, which he joked “may be close to the last one.

4:17 p.m. Organizations are slowly pouring into the Bryce Jordan Center as the arena begins to fill up with colorful tutus and gigantic letters.


4:13 p.m. Where are you THONing from this weekend? We want to know where you’ll be following along, whether it’s Pennsylvania, China, the North Pole, or anywhere in between.

4:10 p.m. Gate A is officially OPEN! Welcome to THON 2015.

3:59 p.m. Donation stations throughout the BJC concourse are decorated with Hogwarts-related themes. All four houses are represented, so even Slytherins can donate to THON all weekend long.

 3:53 p.m. The Hope Express has made plenty of progress on its 135-mile journey from the Penn State Hershey Medical Center to THON, braving wind chills that dipped as low as -30 degrees overnight.

3:42 p.m. Have you ever wondered how dancer relations committee members — formerly known as moralers — meet their dancers? One member shared her story with us.

3:35 p.m. Here’s our THON weekend phone background. Be sure to set your phone accordingly.


3:26 p.m. Committee members have begun to gather on the floor, and musical acts are warming up on the stage. It’s still eerily quiet in the cavernous BJC, but organizations, Greeks, and others will soon fill the stands.

3:00 p.m. Students have begun to line up to enter the Bryce Jordan Center for THON. Dancers stand in three hours.


2:56 p.m. Snapchaters will be able to add an FTK-themed filter to their pictures using the BJC’s wifi this weekend. No word if the app will add a snapchat story feature for the weekend, which it often does for big events.

2:35 p.m. Although they’re now known as Dancer Relations Committee Members, here’s a blast into the past with our very own Max the Moraler!

2:25 p.m. The Bryce Jordan Center is just about ready for dancers. We dance in less than four hours!


2:15 p.m. If you’re still gathering your last-minute supplies for THON, make sure to check out our list of things to not forget this weekend.

2:00 p.m. The Bryce Jordan Center was putting some finishing touches on its conversion to THON earlier this afternoon.


Our Coverage


THON 2015 Raises $13,026,653.23 For The Kids — Hozza
Stacy Bingler Forbes: The Picture of THON Involvement — McCleery
Family Hour A Culmination Of An Emotional, Empowering Weekend
 — Fleming
James Franklin Kicks Off Family Hour With Emotional Speech, Pledges $13,000 to THON
— Doon
Eli Sidler: Even In Passing, His Impact Lives On
— Hozza
Overheard In The Men’s Bathroom At THON
 — Staff
Tell Us What Your Organization Is Doing For Your 4D Families Not Able To Attend THON Weekend
 — McCleery
Blue Team Wins Color Wars 2015
 — Hozza
Natty Nittany: THON 2015 Edition
 — Lipscutz
THON Behind the Scenes: What’s Below the BJC?
 — Purcell
BJC Nearing Capacity At 9 a.m.
 — McCleery
Rockets Bring Energy, Cool Dance Moves To BJC
 — Schlosser
Overheard In The Women’s Bathroom At THON, Part 2
 — Fleming
Relive Last Night’s THON 2015 Pep Rally
 — Myers
Dancers Stand for 46: Why The Arbitrary Number?
 — McCleery
Breakfast in the BJC: Power Through the Final Morning
 — Purcell
Life Fits In A Fanny Pack For THON Attendees
 — Fleming
Table Ten Returns To THON For Day 3 Performance
— Gilbert
Dancer Spotlight: John Wortman
— Schlosser
10 Questions With Club Tennis THON Chair Rebecca Sech
— Robinson
10 Questions With Entertainment Director Jake Bramande
— Rickens
How To Enjoy The Final Hours Of THON If You Can’t Be Here
— Abrams
Best Of The Best: T-Shirts Of THON 2015
— Civian
Nittany Lion Michael Valania’s Spirits Remain High With 11 Hours Left To Dance
— McCleery
BJC Water Fountains: Where You At?
— McCleery
Energetic My Hero Zero Set Livens BJC
— Schlosser
Weather Report For The Last Day Of THON
— Leeson
10 Questions With Line Dancer Leader Ally Zierold
— Hozza
Orgs In Portal 104 Forced To Relocate To Upper Deck
— Fleming
Org Spotlight: Boulevard’s Chair On Why They THON
— Abruzzese
Ned, From Ned’s Declassified, Is Here At THON
— Fleming
THON Now Offering Dancers A Gluten-Free Option
— Reisman
Org Spotlight: Pillar
— Schlosser
Taylor Hennon and Tim Donovan: The First Proposal of THON 2015
 — McCleery
BASD Mini-THON, Living and Learning at Penn State’s Big Dance
— Leeson
A THON Love Story: Julie & Vince
— Myers
What Are Dancers Listening To On The Floor?
— Fleming
Men’s Hockey Dominates THON 2015 Pep Rally
— McCleery


Dear THON: A Letter Of Encouragement — Myers
10 Questions with THON Talent Show Winner David Gaines — Reisman
Freshmen Tell Us About Their First THON
— Fleming
Dancers Try To Stay Positive Despite Pass System Troubles
— Szkaradnik
DRCM Advice: How To Help A Dancer If You Can’t Get On The Floor — Szkaradnik
Nikki Trofa and Casey Gallagher: A Look At Independent Dancers — Hozza
Leah and Colleen Patrick: A Legacy of THON Devotion — Caskie
Why I Don’t THON: Penn Staters Share Their Stories — McCleery
Quiz: What Committee Should You Be On? — Caiske
Kappa Kappa Gamma And Delta Chi Dancers In High Spirits — Szkaradnik
The Jerseys Of Thon — Abruzzese
Power Ranking The Best THON Toys — Reisman
The Most Unique Costumes at THON — Lesson
2015 Homecoming Theme Announced: A Legacy To Shape The Future — Gilbert
Crowd-Favorite Lenina Crowne Rocks the THON 2015 StageCaskie
Video: Donors Give to Wigs For Kids
Org Spotlight On Monarch: For The Kids, For The Keisters, and For The Queen
Which Committee Would THONers Choose If Not Selected To Dance?
Matt Zanellato Works To Increase Football Team’s THON Involvement
Video: THON Fashion Show
THON 2015 Passes Halfway Mark
Water Polo Teams Celebrate THON Child’s Final Chemotherapy Treatment
Who Are You Repping At THON?
Kappa Kappa Gamma And Delta Chi Floor Passes Suspended
— Szkaradnik
Things As Large As Delta Upsilon’s Letters — Narisako
DOTD: Pope John Paul II Blessed THON In 1983 — Myers
Pistol Peg Performs at THON — Edgell
Once A THON Dancer, Alumnus Now Photographs FTK — Fleming
The 10 Best THON Tutus Of 2015 — Caskie
Power Ranking The Five Most Recent THON Line Dances — Myers
OPP Captain Talks Slides of Strength — Calderaro
The Best THON Nail Art — Szkaradnik
Behind the Black Curtain: What Goes On Behind The Stage Area? — Reisman
Garden State Radio Takes The Stage, Engages The Crowd — Salem
VIDEO: 2015 Line Dance, Up Close — Lukow
Nine Wholesome Meals In The BJC For Under 10 Dollars — Fleming
Phi Sigma Sigma Takes On Its First THON — Gailey
Org Spotlight: Boulevard Celebrating Fourth THON As An Organization — Szkaradnik
Four Diamonds Employee Sees Her Work In Action — Szkaradnik
7 Ways To Keep Your Energy Up As A Spectator — Reisman
Video: A Hula Hoop’s Mesmerizing Perspective of THON — Lukow
9 Things That Go Through A Masseuse’s Mind During Slides of Strength — Heckman
Winter Storm Warning In Effect For Saturday-Sunday Of THON — Gilbert
Kappa Kappa Gamma and Delta Chi’s THON Move Adventure — Edgell
The Few And Far Between: The Freshmen On The Dance Floor — Shimkonis
Breakfast and Lowjack: Veteran Band Rocks BJC On Saturday Morning — Gilbert
25,000 Penn Staters Don’t THON: Let’s Hear Their Stories — McCleery
Grilled Cheese Adds Gooey Deliciousness to THON — Reisman
10 Questions With A THON Dancer’s Parents — Edgell
Dan Ellman: Altoona Benefiting THON — Foley
Seven Unexpected Benefits To Standing In Am Empty Row — Foley
Backstage To The Floor: Former THON Leaders Dance As Alumni — Berger
Penn State’s Athletic Training Club: The Secret Cure To Dancers’ Aches And Pains — Doon
Urban Dance Troupe Takes Its Moves To The FloorFoley
Best Fanny Packs of THON Weekend — Edgell
10 Questions With Ohana Logistics Executive Nikki Devito — Shimkonis
‘Where’s My Org?’: Your Guide To The BJC Arena — Fleming
How Do Dancers Stay Entertained (And Awake) During THON? — Doon
The Best Hats Of THON 2015 — Abruzzese
Spirits High As THON 2015 Passes 12-Hour Mark — Gilbert
10 Questions With An Unofficial Dancer-In-The-Stands — Zuber
The Best THON-Inspired Tattoos — Fleming
Overheard During Slides of Strength — Doluisio
Volunteers Answer Why They THON With #instaTHON — Salem
THON 2015, Through Eyes Old And New — Shimkonis/Myers
We Rounded Up The Best Hairstyles Around The BJC — Zuber
VIDEO: The First 10 Hours Of THON — Lukow
THON Q&A With ESPN’s John Buccigross — Robinson
GoPro Video: Relive The Human Tunnel — Lukow
ESPN’s John Buccigross Comes To THON — Gilbert
Whiskey Business Rocks THON With Crowd Favorites — Glossner
Questions Asked During THON: Night One — Doluisio
Interactive Map: THON Around The World — Fleming
Unsung Heroes Of THON: Behind The Scenes In A Concessions Stand — Myers
Dancing With A Dinosaur — Heckman
VIDEO: The BJC Transforms Into THON — Lukow
The Master Playlist: Every Song Played At THON 2015, In Order — Gilbert
Best Greek And Org Letters Of THON — Lippincott
Spoken Word Artist David Gaines Crowned Winner Of ‘THON’s Got Talent’ — Glossner
2015 THON Line Dance References, Explained — Zuber
THON 2015 Pass System Off To A Rough Start — McCleery
Check Out Atlas’s Giant, Pink, Fuzzy Hat — Civian


I Spy: THON 2015 Edition — Myers
VIDEO: We Found The 10 Loudest Orgs Around The BJC
— Fleming
Alyssa Rubenstein Is FTK (And Has John Stamos’ Support)
— Civian
First THON Performance Features Ambitions And Penn State Thespians
— Glossner
Blue & White Society Member Celebrates His Birthday While Dancing
— Robinson
Raffle Proceeds Go To THON, Also Provide Some Sweet Prizes
— Glossner
Dancer Reactions To This Year’s Line Dance
— Robinson
‘Where Is That?’: A Portal-By-Portal Guide To Everything In The BJC During THON
— Purcell
It’s Dinner Time For The 708 Dancers
— Fleming
THON Is A ‘Homecoming of Sorts’ For Four Diamonds Director Suzanne Graney
— Hozza
Power Ranking The 10 Best THON 2015 Line Dance Lyrics
— Myers
Review: Pretzel Revolution Opens in the Jordan Center for THON
— Berkman
Sign Your Favorite Memories At The THON Museum
— Tully
THON: By The Numbers
— Berger
Whoop, Here It Is: The THON 2015 Line Dance
46 Hours and Counting: THON 2015 Kicks Off
— Berger
Khloé Kardashian Tweets ‘Good Luck’ to THON Participants
— Tully
Hannah Richardson Sings Beautiful Rendition of ‘Imagine’
— Fleming
Phi Mu’s Roshan Promisel Dances For Late Grandfather
— Civian
Gate A Officially Opens for THON 2015
THON Website Crashes As Big Event Approaches
— Horne
Send Us Your Snapchats of THON Weekend
— Hozza
A Smoky Haze Fills The BJC Arena And Concourse 
— McCleery
Charles Millard Attends THON 2015 Press Conference 
— Myers
The List of 708 Dancers for THON 2015 
— Purcell
Where Are You Following THON From? 
— Fleming
THON Decorates Donation Stations With Hogwarts Themes 
— McCleery
Hope Express Runners Endure Frigid 135-Mile Trek To THON 
— Berger
Behind the Scenes of the Dancer Relations Committee 
— Doluisio
THON Introduces FTK Snapchat Filter 
— Myers

Pre-THON Coverage

Weather Report Forecasts A Bitterly Cold THON Weekend — Reisman
The Hope Express: The Run Of A Lifetime — Myers
THON Updates BJC Entrance Procedure Due to Weather Concerns — McCleery
This Year’s THON Is Rife With Change — Myers
Freshman 101: How To Survive Your First THON — Robinson
The Official 2015 THON Weekend Dictionary — Heckman
The Nittany Lion Is Dancing In THON, Suit And All — McCleery
What To Bring To THON 2015 — Calderaro
Where To Get Last-Minute THON Gear — Caskie
Four Decades, For The Kids: A Look Into THON’s History — Myers
THON 2015 Prop Bets — Purcell
Music Monday: THON Dancer Playlist — Hozza
State College to be Renamed ‘City of THON’ — Horne
THON Dancers and DCRMs Kick Off 2015 Color Wars — Popescu
THON Rolls Out New Digital Line for Friday BJC Entrance — Calderaro
Your Comprehensive Guide to THON — Myers
How to Prepare Yourself for THON 2015 — Thomas
Calling All Orgs: Win Limo Service For Your THON Family — Thomas
The Official Guide to THON Dancer Mail — Salem
Parkmobile To Donate a Portion Of Transaction Fees To THON — Schlosser
DOTD: Thad Castle Wants You to Donate to THON — Lippincott
Whitehead Family Launches ‘Emily Whitehead Foundation’ — Schlosser
Mr. Public Relations, Mrs. Dancer Relations Take Home Mr. and Mrs. THON — Berkman

Photo Galleries

We’ll be posting links to our photo albums from the Bryce Jordan Center throughout the weekend here.

Accounts to Follow


@THONwardState – Our THON specific account

@OnwardState – Our main account

@THON – The official THON account

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