RockyTHON adapts annual spaghetti dinner fundraiser

Rachel Greene , Editor-in-chief

Western Illinois University RockyTHON, formerly known as Dance Marathon, will host their annual spaghetti dinner this Thursday.

In a typical year, RockyTHON hosts a pancake dinner in the Fall and a spaghetti dinner in the Spring. This year, due to COVID-19 regulations and the event moving to a drive-thru format, members of the leadership team for RockyTHON opted to have the spaghetti dinner in the Fall in hopes that this meal would be more easily transported and would still be appetizing by the time it reached its final destination.

When the event was initially announced, the flyers and advertisements said that it would be hosted at the American Legion, as it usually is. Due to the newly implemented restrictions for businesses and restaurants, the American Legion was forced to ultimately cancel the event, leaving the leadership team to return to the drawing board. Vice President of Finance Justin Brown said, “The initial news that our usual location was no longer able to accommodate our event was disheartening to say the least, but RockyTHON is not a group of individuals who tend to give up. As soon as we received the news, we started brainstorming new ways to raise funds for the kids and eventually came up with a suitable plan.” The group received approval from Western Illinois University to host their event out of the kitchen that is located in Knoblauch Hall. Never having done an event in this location, RockyTHON is in the process of developing a map to guide people through the line. The drive-thru will take place from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. and cars will be directed through the parking lot in between Knoblauch and the Malpass Library. There will be members of the organization designated to be cooking, running the food from upstairs to downstairs, checking the list of ticket sales and delivering the packaged boxes of spaghetti and sides to the cars in attendance.

Vice President of External Marisa Santore said, “I am excited to be a part of this event that raises not only funds, but also awareness for our cause. Even in a year when it seems like the world is stopping, there are always ways to continue to help the kids in Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. I hope the spaghetti dinner helps shed light on our organization and the important work we do on this campus.”

Because this event cannot function in the all-you-eat fashion that it usually does, the ticket cost was lowered from the typical $7 in advance and $10 at the door to $5 in advance and $7 at the door. Tickets can be purchased from any member of the RockyTHON Executive Board or Morale Team, through paying @WIURockython on Venmo or by dropping off cash payments to the Office of Student Engagement.