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Carnival kicks off $1M BuckeyeThon fundraising campaign

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OSU students stand with their teams during BuckeyeThon on Feb. 15. Credit: Melissa Prax / Lantern photographer

OSU students stand with their teams during BuckeyeThon on Feb. 15.
Credit: Melissa Prax / Lantern photographer

Ohio State’s 24-hour dance marathon benefitting children will kick off fundraising efforts this weekend with nothing short of a kid’s idea of fun.

BuckeyeThon is set to host its carnival-style event, dubbed “CarnOval,” on Friday from 4-8 p.m. on the South Oval. All proceeds from the sale of wristbands will be going to the Hematology, Oncology and Bone Marrow Transplant Department at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, said BuckeyeThon President Jim O’Brien, who is a fourth-year in biology.

Student Life spokesman Dave Isaacs said this was the first year for CarnOval. He was unable to provide a cost for the event.

Wristbands can be purchsed for $7 and give access to two food items, one beverage and all carnival activities, including games, caricatures, prizes and a carousel, according to the event’s website.

Children under 5 years old can attend for free with an adult wristband purchase.

BuckeyeThon is a student organization that works throughout the academic year to raise money for children being treated at Nationwide Children’s Hospital through various events, including CarnOval on Friday and a 24-hour dance marathon later in the year.

“BuckeyeThon is striving to cultivate a spirit of student philanthropy on campus and CarnOval is just one of the initiatives we are using to promote this mindset,” O’Brien said.

This year, the 14th annual dance-off is aiming to raise $1 million. Last year, students danced their way to making more than $767,000. In total, it’s raised $2.5 million over the past 13 years.

Attendees of the CarnOval will have the opportunity to meet several of the 15 families with children who BuckeyeThon is fundraising for, according to the website.

BuckeyeThon has partnered with the Office of Student Life to plan the event.

The carousel is one of the additions made through this partnership, Venigalla said.

In previous years, BuckeyeThon hosted a similar fundraising event called “Fest,” said Katie Horvath, vice president of programming for BuckeyeThon.

Horvath, a fifth-year in zoology and Spanish, said CornOval is a “rebranding” of Fest, given the recent support from Student Life.

Some students are aware of BuckeyeThon’s efforts and plan to attend Friday’s event.

“I think (CarnOval) is a really fun, visible idea because anybody walking by will notice it and have the chance to come and learn more,” said Kylie Neeman-Brown, a fourth-year in English.

Neeman-Brown plans to attend the event and said she participated in the BuckeyeThon dance marathon last year. She said she encourages other students to participate and fundraise as well, and said it’s “a great, rewarding cause.”

Carley Hornak, a fourth-year in criminology, said she also plans to attend CarnOval on Friday.

“It’s a great cause and I’ve seen a lot of my friends on the team have a lot of fun at the different events. Plus you really have no excuse because it’s right there,” Hornak said.

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