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Twin Sisters Take On Virtual THON As Dancers For Penn State Greater Allegheny

Riley and Rebecca McAllister have spent their entire lives by each other’s side. Now, they can add another event to that long list of moments they shared: THON.

The juniors are taking the (virtual) dance floor representing Penn State Greater Allegheny, the branch campus they transferred into in their freshman year. It was near the end of their freshmen year that they first got involved with THON, though they knew about it well before then.

“We’ve always been up to State College since we were little because our aunt and uncle lived up there,” Riley said. “We were excited that once we were able to go to Penn State, we would be a part of [THON].”

As twins, they realize how lucky they are that they can have this once-in-a-lifetime experience with each other. They also know that dancing together will help them work through any challenges that may arise.

“I think that’s one of the reasons we tried to be together this year because I know it would be hard if someone had to do it by themselves at their house,” Rebecca said. “Since me and Riley are able to stand up together in the basement, I won’t get as tired as easily.”

They also plan on using their experience from last year as people in the stands to their advantage.

“Last year, it was really nice having someone there that knows everything about you, that can tell when you’re starting to get tired, and we just hit each other at different points to keep ourselves awake,” Rebecca said.

Despite the new challenges that a virtual THON presents, both sisters have things that they would like to take away from the weekend.

“Even though THON is super different from what anybody is used to, my goal is to make it as fun as possible,” Riley said. “We still want to get the message out that we are doing this to raise as much money as we possibly can and still have a good time for everyone involved, especially the kids.”

Rebecca echoed her sister’s thoughts while also talking about what it means to have an event like THON still continue, even in a time such as the coronavirus pandemic.

“Despite it being online, you can see across the board that THON can happen anywhere,” Rebecca said. “It is just the same amount of support that amazes me every year.”

As the two sisters dance into the weekend in their parent’s basement, they are excited to dance in the event that made them love their time at Penn State. And as juniors, who knows! We may see them back in the stands when next year’s THON rolls around.

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About the Author

Owen Abbey

Owen Abbey is a senior from Annapolis, Maryland, majoring in secondary education and minoring in social justice in education. When he is not writing for the blog, he enjoys rooting for the Baltimore Orioles and Ravens, supporting Penn State basketball and softball, dreaming of all of the ways he would win the TV show "Survivor", and yes mom, actually doing school work. If you would like to talk about sports or "Survivor", the best way to reach out is on Twitter @theowenabbey. All other compliments may be sent to [email protected]

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