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10,000 Hours to host DJ, carnival

BY LUKE VOELZ | FEBRUARY 16, 2011 7:20 AM

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This year’s annual 10,000 Hours Show will come in two parts — a DJ and a carnival.

The celebration free for people who log their 10 hours of volunteer work typically seeks out a national artist to perform at a single event in April; past years have included OK Go and Jack’s Mannequin. But this year, after receiving feedback, organizers said they have made some changes.

The organization will host a DJ concert in the IMU in April followed by a carnival in Hubbard Park several weeks later. The DJ hasn’t been booked yet, but Kristin Fuhs, the executive director of operations for the group, said the members are looking at several nationally known artists.

“Our main goal this year is to provide more of a celebration for volunteers,” the University of Iowa senior said.

The 10,000 Hours Show, founded eight years ago at the UI, tracks the time participants spend volunteering at nonprofit organizations. Once a member reaches 10 hours, he or she is given a ticket to a free April concert in the IMU.

Fuhs said organizers decided on a DJ partially because of the popularity of 2009 show headliner Girl Talk, the only other DJ to perform at a 10,000 Hours Show.

Cost efficiency was another deciding factor; concerts in the past have traditionally cost the program upwards of $21,000. The funding for these shows comes through donations from local charities as well as the UI Student Government and the President’s Office. The Student Government gave the largest donation last year of $15,000.

Three thousand members are registered so far for this year’s program. Fuhs estimates this is around the same numbers as the last several years, though in 2010, only 250 attended the April 11 concert.

Fuhs said she believes the low numbers were because the show was too close to final exams.

To boost the reward this year and ensure students can actually attend one of the celebrations, the carnival hosted in Hubbard Park may be in conjunction with RiverFest. 10,000 Hours Show executives are planning on allowing nonparticipants to enter the carnival for a fee — the first time a such a show has been made open to the public. These fees will help fund smaller parts of the show and carnival, such as food costs.

Last year, UI students accounted for 86.2 percent of participants. UI senior Habie Timbo said she participated last year because of an interest in the flexibility the program gave students.

“You get a better freedom to pick what you want to volunteer for, how much time you want to put in, and what you get back,” she said.

On Wednesday night, roughly 20 people gathered at the Airliner for the 10,000 Hours Show announcement party to learn the details of this year’s celebration.

10,000 Hours media-relations head Megan Stiles said she believes the show’s recent popularity is from increased efforts to spread information on both the show and volunteer opportunities throughout campus.

“I think opportunities are thrown at you in a collegiate setting like this,” she said.

Fitting 10 hours in already hectic college schedules can be difficult, but UI senior Jenny Rutledge said people should be willing to take a small bit of time out of their schedule.

“I think it can be difficult, but if you really think about it, it’s only a couple hours,” she said.


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