How Long Did THON Spectators Stand?

Last weekend 707 dancers stood 46 hours for the kids in the fight against childhood cancer. While what these 707 students did is incredible, both physically and mentally, not everyone can force themselves to make that commitment, especially in the stands.

We asked the 2018 crowd during and after THON weekend ended how long they chose to stand for, and you may be surprised by the results.

How Long They Stood

As if it was no surprise, the smallest percentage of people forced themselves to stand for close to 46 hours. However out of everyone we polled, 50 percent of the spectators stayed 19-28 hours.

That means basically half the weekend and possibly more if you include entrance plan. Assuming these hours were spread out over the course of the three days, it meant little sleep and provides a perfect explanation of why students looked like zombies walking to class today.

The second largest percentage included those who stayed from 1-8 hours, coming in at 27.8 percent. It’s easy to assume that this percentage of the crowd includes those who weren’t elected to a THON committee or didn’t have standing shifts with their organization, so they had freedom to come and leave the building as they pleased.

Why They Left

There’s a constant debate about what is more challenging THON weekend — staying awake or staying standing. For this THON 2018 crowd it was staying awake. 38.9 percent of those who answered said they left because they were too tired to stay any longer. Surprisingly, 33.3 percent of participants left for other reasons and only 11.1 percent of the crowd chose to leave because their legs or feet hurt. Another 11.1 percent of people left because they were hungry, and didn’t want to face breaking the bank when trying to eat inside the BJC. This left only 5.6 percent of the crowd leaving because they felt they were bored and couldn’t stay any longer.

Those who chose other decided to leave for a variety of reasons. Some left because they were freshman and felt mentally unprepared, while others left because their committee shift ended and they didn’t think they could continue. The most common answer was that people didn’t get enough sleep prior to THON weekend, and hit a wall earlier than they anticipated.

Would They Do It Differently?

A whopping 66.7 percent of responders said they would go about THON differently next year and challenge themselves to stay longer.

No matter how long you stayed, THON 2018 raised $10,151,663.93 for the kids, and that’s really something to be proud of.

About the Author

Caitlin Gailey

Senior from just outside the city of Brotherly Love. Yes, I am one of those Philly sports fans. I bleed blue and white and have since birth. Maybe someday you will see me on ESPN and then again maybe not. If you ever want to inflate my ego email me at [email protected]


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