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Late Night Olympics raises $8,659

Katie Perry | Thursday, January 27, 2005

After tallying scores and tabulating donations, organizers for this past weekend’s Late Night Olympics said the RecSports-sponsored event raised $8,659 for the St. Joseph County Special Olympics. Funds raised exceeded last year’s total by more than $500, said Bill Reagan, assistant director of instruction, special events and family programs for RecSports. The Welsh Family-Keough team was the overall winner. Revenue for the event was produced through a variety of means, including a Penny War, raffle, front door donation and open skate at the Joyce Center ice rink. Most proceeds, however, came from the required cost for each participating team, and entry fees alone totaled more than $2,700. Each team competes in all events and points for each activity are totaled to produce an overall winner. No single fundraising category saw an immense increase, however revenue was increased “across the board,” said Reagan. Five of the six categories saw significant jumps in donations.Reagan attributes the relative fundraising increases to the addition of the MBA team. Last year was the first year Notre Dame graduate students were allowed to participate and since then competition has improved, said Reagan.”I think the MBA group has set an example for dorm students as far as overall team organization,” Reagan said.One dorm student team with comparable unity and organization is Keough and Welsh Family. The West Quad halls proved their dynasty status by claiming the overall Late Night Olympics championship for the 4th straight year.With a total points score of 2,514 the Keough-Welsh Family team edged the MBA team by less than 100 points. Keough-Welsh Family won more than a third of the 17 events.Keough Hall athletic commissioner Pat Schaefer said that the team’s past successes have spurred a widespread desire to perform well at the event.”Both hall councils [Keough and Welsh Family] emphasize that we are somewhat of a dynasty now and we want to continue that tradition,” Schaefer said. “The dorms are committed to LNO from everybody from the top down.”However, large-scale participation was not a success enjoyed only by the event’s victors. After dropping in 2004, overall LNO participation saw an increase as this year more than 1,300 students participated.Schaefer attributes the large number of participants to their genuine desire to partake in the event.”I think that a lot of our success comes from the people in the dorm who participate and really want to be there,” Schaefer said. “This great attitude toward LNO helps us get a lot of good teams together.”Aside from a few minor injuries and scheduling mishaps, the event ran well and disciplinary measures were unnecessary, said Reagan.”The thing I noticed is that kids were having a great time,” he said. “The students were remarkably well-behaved for a Saturday night activity that lasted through the wee hours of the morning.”