Fraternity teeter-totters in commons for charity

By Grant Miller

If you have seen teeter-totters in the King Memorial Commons this week, your eyes have not been deceiving you.

Delta Sigma Phi fraternity, in association with the March of Dimes, will be teeter-tottering in the commons until Friday at noon. By the time the fraternity finishes, it will have teeter-tottered for 100 hours and is hoping to have raised $7,000 for the birth defect foundation.

The fraternity has been teeter-tottering in the commons since 8 a.m. Monday morning, 24 hours a day.

The idea for the teeter-totter campaign came about this past summer, when house members were brainstorming for alternative ways to generate money for the March of Dimes.

“We wanted to reach out to the NIU community and the DeKalb community and show them what Greek life is all about,” House President Michael Regan said. “The Greek community is more than just parties; we spend a lot of our time doing charity work like this.”

In the past, the fraternity has stood on street corners collecting change for the March of Dimes, usually generating $1,000 for the charity. This year, expectations are higher.

“Our goal this year is to raise $7,000, and so far it’s looking pretty good,” Regan said. “We already have five sponsors, which have really been helpful.”

Burns Gym, Nick’s Restaurant, Lukulo’s Restaurant, Domino’s Pizza and the National Bank and Trust Company of Sycamore have each donated $250 to the cause.

The teeter-totters being used for the event were donated by the DeKalb Carpenters Union.

T-shirts advertising the event are available at the teeter-totter site for $7. The T-shirts are emblazoned with the smiling faces of teeter-totter superstars, Bobby and Cindy Brady, fictional characters from the “Brady Bunch” television show.

“People just seem to associate the teeter-totter with the Brady Bunch,” House Philanthropy Chair Boris Kogan said. “So it was appropriate for us to put them on the T-shirt.”

Proceeds from the T-shirt sales also will go toward the March of Dimes.

House members hope this event will help build house spirit. “This is an opportunity for the whole house to come together and work as one,” Regan said. “Everyone is out there supporting each other.”

House members are hoping to build a philanthropy tradition that can be used in more ways than one. “This is something that can really be expanded upon—it can be used as a Rush tool, or you can involve more fraternities and sororities.

“We really want to be able come back here in a few years and see that the teeter-totter tradition has survived,” he said.

The event also helps promote the relatively new fraternity. “We’ve only been established at NIU for about seven years,” Kogan said. “Houses like Pikes and Sigma Chi have been here and have established permanent philanthropy drives.”

House members working on the teeter-totters have their own outlook on the situation. “I’ve been on this teeter-totter for about an hour, and I guess you can say I feel short and I feel tall,” House Member Erik Kuska said. “It’s been okay, but my inner thighs are starting to bother me.”

Kuska advises anyone riding a teeter-totter at night to wear gloves and a hat. “It can get pretty cold at night, but it’s still pretty fun,” he said.

Donations can be made at the teeter-totter site in the commons and pledges can be made by calling the fraternity at 758-1015.