by Colleen Flickinger

Addison Albert (senior, Broadcast Journalism) is dancing in THON 2021 representing The Singing Lions and their two angels, Lexi Barnett and Kirra Broadwater. She is originally from outside of Pittsburgh, PA but this weekend she is dancing at her friend’s house in State College. Complete with a puzzle room, foosball tables, and a standing dancer table straight from the Bryce Jordan Center, the house on Barnard street is decked out. The well-known tall wooden tables that are normally scattered across the THON floor, were sold this year with purchases being credited directly toward organizations. Addison and her fellow dancers are having fun with themed hours like Harry Potter, luau, pink, and rainbow pride, but the decorations and recognition that come with dancing are not top of mind.

Addison has been heavily involved with THON through The Singing Lions since her freshman year. She served as the organization’s Family Relations Chair for two years as well as a reporter for 46LIVE before deciding this was the perfect year to dance in honor of “her girls”, Lexi and Kirra. She never wanted to take any attention away from the true heroes, the THON children. Addison shared that Lexi’s dream was to dance at THON. “I always wanted to do it whenever it felt right,” said Albert. “And so finally this year, I felt like it was my turn to do it for her because the spotlight would finally still be on the kids instead of all the dancers in the BJC.”

The Final Four hours are an especially emotional time for Addison and the entire THON community. She looks forward to this period because it’s dedicated to honor the lives her angels lived and allows her to feel close with them in heaven. What keeps her motivated is knowing they’re looking down on her and that they know she’s fulfilling their dreams in their memory.

In addition to her THON involvement, Addison enjoys singing, dancing, and acting as well as leadership and service. As a Lion Ambassador, she helps create opportunities for service and

partnerships within the community in her role as Service Ad-Hoc. She also volunteers with LifeLink, which partners Penn State Student Mentors with special education students in State College to help them gain academic and social independence.

Although this is Addison’s last THON as a student, she is happy to pass the torch to future dancers and volunteers. She said that although she’s sad it is over, she’s glad it happened, and is, “proud to know that it’s some else’s turn.” She also feels this year’s theme, Rise & Unify, is particularly appropriate. “It’s exactly what this year needed,” said Albert. “It doesn’t matter where you are. Whenever we stand, aka rise, we’re all one fighting for the same mission, at the same time, with the same hope that one day we will all dance in celebration for the cure for cancer for kids.