Five hundred twenty-five human robots danced into the Guinness Book of World Records Sunday at the second annual Stevenson High School Spirit Fest. After a quick dance lesson, students, parents and others from the community lined up along the the football field yardage and shifted into quick, in sync, robotic moves to the song "Mr. Roboto" by Styx. The previous record was set by 429 dancers in London.
Spirit Fest organizers well documented the event with video, pictures and precise number counting to submit to Guinness World Records for certification.
"It was fun," said Stevenson freshman Ethan Rosuck. "To see everyone doing the exact same thing on a big football field — it was awesome!"
National Honor Society President Kayla Reinherz said the entire day turned out great. "I thought it was hilarious," said Reinherz, after participating in the massive robot dance.
But Reinherz said she's most proud of their efforts to raise money for the Saving Tiny Hearts Society which helps fund research for congenital heart defects.
"I am so filled with excitement and honor to be giving back to this amazing charity," said Reinherz.
One reason why the National Honor Society, which organized the event, chose the Saving Tiny Hearts Society's application out of 20 others, is because of its grassroots efforts and a strong Stevenson connection. The founder, Brian Paul, is a 1993 Stevenson graduate and his mother worked at the high school many years ago.
Paul's son, 5-year-old Joshua, was born with congenital heart disease and underwent heart surgery when he was just four days old. After a second surgery, Joshua is now a growing and happy boy, but his mother, Francie Paul, said without research, many other children won't get the same chance.
"We're changing the future of medicine one research project at time," said Francie Paul.
The Saving Tiny Hearts Society is the only organization in the country using 100 percent of general donations directly for congenital heart defect research.
"We depend on events like this. We're a totally volunteer-based organization," said Brian Paul, who was overwhelmed by the outpouring of support from Stevenson students. "We thank everybody. It's absolutely amazing."
Spirit Fest kicked off Homecoming week at Stevenson with a lot of school enthusiasm. Activities also included a student Battle of the Bands, with the group From the Sidelines coming in first place. Students also enjoyed the 20-foot slide, carnival games, a Velcro wall and food.
The day ended with a 5k walk around the school to show the school's solidarity and commitment to extending a helping hand to community organizations such as the Saving Tiny Hearts Society, one step and heartbeat at a time.