CHESTNUTHILL TOWNSHIP -- This is a big weekend for students at Penn State -- THON 2018 kicks off Friday. It's a dance marathon to raise money to fight childhood cancer but the effort goes far beyond Happy Valley.
Fifth graders at Pleasant Valley Intermediate School cheered as they discovered how much money they have raised this year for the Four Diamonds Fund -- $14,000 and counting.
"Our students have been coming together using teamwork, having community events and fundraisers in order to raise money to find a cure for cancer for Four Diamonds and mini-THON," said Pleasant Valley Intermediate School Principal Cassandra Herr.
Mini-THONS, smaller versions of Penn State's THON, are taking place at each of the Pleasant Valley schools, each school with its own fundraising theme.
"PVMS Light the Way for a Cure, so that's what we're doing. We're lighting the way and hoping that one day a cure will be found to cure childhood cancer," said assistant principal Josephine Fields.
Four Diamonds mini-THONS and raising money for childhood cancer is a district-wide effort at Pleasant Valley.
"The fact that we have elementary, intermediate, middle and high schoolers so kids you know that are 4, 5 years old up through 18 years old, you know, doing something that's not for themselves, I think really speaks to the culture that's within this community and I think that's just phenomenal," said Four Diamonds associate director Alek Tomazin.
The Four Diamonds Fund helps families pay for care at Penn State Hershey Medical Center and funds research.
For students at Pleasant Valley, the cause they're dancing for hits close to home.
"We have a student here who successfully has fought cancer, we're very happy to say. So he actually has a younger sibling here and one across the street at PVE so we're dancing for him today especially in his honor."
Students at Pleasant Valley will continue to dance for a cause in hopes of raising more than $10,000 for each school.