Radiothon to raise donations

State-A-Thon utilizes new ways to raise money

South Dakota State University’s State-A-Thon organization is teaming up with the Children’s Miracle Network Hospital in Sioux Falls, South Dakota in a Radiothon for local miracle families. 

This particular event is unfamiliar to the Brookings area. At least, it is unfamiliar to the area for the past decade. 

The event is from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 18 and is hosted on B93.7, according to Shannon Miller, senior pharmacy major and overall coordinator of State-A-Thon. Miracle stories will be shared and live interviews with miracle families will run on the air.

Donations can be made by calling into the station within the time frame or stopping by the radio station.

Kelly Beneke, junior pharmacy major and executive board member of State-A-Thon, said the goal for one-day donations is $25,000. 

“All of our proceeds go to local miracle families to help with the costs of travel, appointments and medical equipment for the children,” Beneke said. 

The overall goal is to raise $90,000, topping last year’s total of just over $88,000. This year’s goal includes proceeds from both Radiothon and the State-A-Thon Dance Marathon, which will be held April 2 in the Volstorff Ballroom.

Beneke said State-A-Thon’s Radiothon is quite popular in Sioux Falls, and the organization is trying to move Brookings toward a similar direction. 

Beneke said all of the miracle families come on April 2. 

“It’s a really moving event,” she said. 

Some of those involved with State-A-Thon on campus have loved ones who have been affected by illnesses who have turned to CMNH for treatment, including Beneke. She said the hard work put into State-A-Thon is worthwhile in the end to see the children’s faces. 

“I have a five-year-old cousin battling leukemia for the second time,” Beneke said. “I came to campus looking to make a difference…State-A-Thon gives us the chance to make a difference.” 

Along with Beneke’s niece, Bryan Waltz, program director and morning host for KCountry 102.3, shared his connection with CMNH and how the hospital helped with the expenses of his son’s premature birth. 

“[CMN] helped with gas cards, lunch vouchers and hotel room costs, which takes a lot of stress out of the situation,” Waltz said.  

State-A-Thon is an organization scattered throughout the United States, but Waltz said all of the money raised locally will stay local.

“I think,” Beneke said, “people should be involved in State-A-Thon to experience something bigger than ourselves.”