Zumba-thon benefits local animal rescue organization

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People fill the Elks Lodge dance floor Saturday during a Zumba-thon benefitting Life Savers Animal Rescue. (Ashley Fox/Lake County Leader)

The Elks Lodge in Polson was filled with loud, booming music while 50 people filled the dance floor, dancing on Saturday afternoon.

Life Savers Animal Rescue and Jeannie Butler held a “zumba-thon,” with the goal to raise money for the animal rescue organization.

The idea of the Zumba-thon came about from local Zumba instructor Jeannie Butler, who explained that Zumba-thons are held around the world, and each event is different.

Saturday was her fourth Zumba-thon fundraiser.

There were seven instructors, including herself, that volunteered their time for the event, she said.

“I am so grateful to them as not only did they volunteer their time, some drove from Helena, Kalispell and Big Fork to be there,” she said via email.

Lynette Duford, vice president of the nonprofit, said that the event, which is the first of its kind, completely benefits the animal care in the program.

Duford said that the donation-based organization consists of all volunteers, meaning that the animals’ foster homes do not receive pay.

Vendors lined up against the walls of the banquet room at the lodge, offering a glimpse of their services.

LSAR does other fundraising events through the year, but President Vickie Radford said that this year, the organization has tried to do a few more.

“We’re trying to do a little more fundraising each year.”

The zumba-thon was great, Radford said, because although the organization has seven board members, doing multiple fundraising efforts a year can be difficult.

Butler organizing the dance-and-exercise party helped LSAR, she noted. “It helps when we have some outside help.”

Some of the vendors were going to donate all of their profits from the day to LSAR, Duford said.

Radford said the team hoped to raise $1,500 through the three-hour event.

Butler later noted that while most of the time she isn’t aware of how much the fundraiser generates exactly, her Zumba-thons typically bring in around $2,000 to $3,000.

For more information on LSAR, visit www.lsar.org.

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