Although the main 26.2-hour event isn’t until April, fundraising for the 2014 Dance Marathon at UF has already begun.

The first community event will start at 6 p.m. tonight at Alley Gatorz Bowling Center at 2606 NE Waldo Road.

“We’re having these events to make a difference in the lives of the families,” said Jordan Robbins, the community events overall chair and 21-year-old UF public relations senior.

Celebrating the 20th year of Dance Marathon, a “‘90s Strikes Back” theme was chosen to coincide with the idea of reminiscing. She is expecting about 75 teams. People will be able to decorate bowling ball cutouts and pins, which will be donated to the UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital, Robbins said.

Another addition is “The Strike is Right Lane,” where a person can donate $1 to compete against a miracle child.

Awards include “Team *NSYNC,” which goes to the most spirited team, and “Fresh Prince of Bowl-Air,” which goes to the team with the best style.

Funds raised throughout the year through UF’s Dance Marathon benefit UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital, as it is the local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital, said Molly Vazquez, a 21-year-old UF public relations senior and public relations overall chair for Dance Marathon

Nick Potts, a 19-year-old finance sophomore, said students are just “a small percentage of the people that support Dance Marathon.”

A version of this story ran on page 4 on 10/22/2013 under the headline "’90s bowling fundraiser to benefit 2014 Dance Marathon"

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