ROXBURY, NJ - Roxbury High School's sixth annual Rox-THON fundraiser for children with pediatric cancer, canceled in March a day before it was supposed to take place, is rescheduled to happen - albeit virtually - on Friday.

Starting at 7 p.m., the YouTube live stream will feature interactive trivia games, a live DJ, prize giveaways and live speakers impacted by pediatric cancer. The in-person event was supposed to be 12 hours long; the virtual one will be about two.

Another unique feature of this year’s Rox-THON event is that it will be open to all members of the community. Because of security concerns, the prior fundraisers only allowed high school students to directly participate in the past.

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“Being able to put it online gives us an opportunity to let people experience RoxTHON who otherwise wouldn’t have had the opportunity,” said Michael Gottfried, the club’s faculty advisor.

The virtual event is also a chance for the club to do a bit more fundraising, said Gottfried.  Seventy percent of funds raised in May will go towards supporting those impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. Funds raised before the original event in March will be donated to Goryeb Children’s Hospital and the Four Diamonds foundations. The club will also buy gift cards from local businesses that have supported Rox-THON and donate them to affected families and health care workers.

However, unlike previous years, the club is not setting a fundraising goal.

“This year has really helped us focus and come closer to the cause rather than how much money we raised,” said Rox-THON president, senior Tori Gonzalez. “A lot of people measure success by money, but we’re really successful despite the number of zeros at the end of the total.”

 In 2019, Rox-THON raised over $80,000 “for the kids,” as their slogan says.

The club expects a few hundred participants including students, family members, teachers, administrators and community members. Participants do not need to fundraise to join the event but are encouraged to do so.

To donate to this cause, click here.

“Given everything that’s going on, it’s still a chance for us to celebrate our year’s worth of work,” Gottfried said. “We had 20 leaders planning for the event this year, starting our efforts last May. Having a virtual event gives us a chance to celebrate the success of those leaders.” 

“I’m so grateful that our advisors and administrators never gave up on us throughout the school year, especially when they have so much else to deal with,” said Gonzalez. “The fact that they’re still allowing us to host the virtual event means a lot to us and the families.

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