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      Hundreds dance the day away for a good cause

      Hundreds of participants put their dancing shoes on for a good cause Saturday.

      More than 400 people danced the day away in support of MU Children TMs Hospital patients.

      Cancer affects everyone in one way or another, dancing participant Keelan Schoenecker said. I came because it TMs a fundraiser that has all of its proceeds go to such a great cause. It TMs also great because we get that much closer to curing cancer what could be better than that.

      Dancers at the fourth annual Mizzou Dance Marathon boogied continuously for 12 hours without sitting or resting to raise money.

      You might think with a little caffeine, dancing that long would be a piece of cake, but think again. Caffeine and watches were off limits during the fundraiser.

      To entertain the dancers, local bands and DJs were on hand as well as children's hospital patients and their families to explain the importance of the money raised.

      Patients and their families sported lime green t-shirts and participants wore blue ones.

      Aaron Watkins was diagnosed with a brain tumor before Christmas last year, his parents said fundraisers like Mizzou TMs Dance Marathon provide so much to the hospitals and also the families of the patients.

      The things that they provide to the hospital, it takes a load off of the parents mind that those things are there, that they TMre well cared for and it TMs just less stress that way, Aaron Watkins mother Angela Watkins said.

      The party lasted until midnight and Schoenecker plans to be there until the very last song.

      Oh yeah, oh yeah, it TMs a dance marathon, you dance, so me and my friends are very excited to be doing that, Schoenecker said.

      MU's dance marathon team has pledged to donate $100,000 to children's hospital during the next five years.

      Last year the Mizzou Dance Marathon rose over $14,000.

      The fundraiser pairs with Children TMs Miracle Network to help the hematology and oncology department at the University of Missouri Children TMs Hospital.