SRU students staying ‘Up ‘til 2’ to support St. Jude

2017 Up til 2

The 11th annual “Up ’til 2” event, a fundraiser for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, will seek to match or surpass it’s 2017 total of $18,910.

Feb. 1, 2018

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Nighttime is when most Slippery Rock University students are finally able to rest and relax after a long day of classes, club meetings, practices or projects.

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That won't be the case Feb. 9. Beginning at 9 p.m., that night, more than 180 SRU students will stay "Up 'til 2" at the Aebersold Recreational Center to take part in a fundraiser for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Registration and check in begin at 8:30 p.m.

The event, now in its 11th year, raises money and awareness for Memphis, Tennessee-based St. Jude, which annually treats more than 7,500 children suffering from childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. More than 75 percent of St. Jude's funding comes from public contributions. Families do not receive a bill for treatment.

"(St. Jude) is an amazing organization," said Katy Fuller, a senior resort, recreation and hospitality management major from Williamsport who acts as "Up 'til 2" executive director. "Whether it's taking care of medical, travel or lodging expenses, St. Jude allows families to solely focus on their child getting better."

This year's event hopes to raise $20,000, and according to Fuller, participating students have already raised nearly $13,000 since the campaign's June kickoff. At that time, students were given a personalized link to an online fundraising page from where they could send emails or post directly to social media in order to raise awareness and support for the event.

Students also distributed sponsorship packets to local businesses, circulated penny jars, hosted a pancake breakfast and conducted a "Spaghetti on the Ready" fundraiser where they fulfilled orders for hand-delivered, homemade spaghetti dinners across campus.

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"Up 'til 2" serves as a celebration for the collective effort that participants have accomplished throughout the year to raise money for St. Jude. The Feb. 9-10 event will feature a variety of events for attendees, including human "Hungry Hungry Hippos," "Minute to Win It" games, relay races and a dance performance.

Participating students must have individually raised a minimum of $50 to attend the event.

With 32 teams involved with this year's campaign, fundraising efforts already surpassed their January 2017 numbers and Fuller expects to see a continuous rise in funds leading up to and during the event. "No matter how much we raise, it is all going to the children's hospital and any amount helps," said Fuller.

Matt Heffelfinger, a senior exercise science major from Allentown, is eager to participate in this year's event.

"I was blessed with a great childhood and want to do my part in giving other children the chance to have that as well," he said. "It is important to me to give back to the community and become involved in solidifying a positive and healthy future for our children."

For additional information on the event, or to inquire about applications for next year's "Up 'til 2" executive board, contact Fuller at kmf1011@sru.edu.

MEDIA CONTACT: Autumn Harth | 724.738.2091 | ash1010@sru.edu