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Red Tutu Trot: A fun way to raise money for cardiac health on campus

September 25, 2019 By Sinclair Richards
Photo: Students wearing athletic clothes and red tutus run.

Students take off in the Red Tutu Trot race in 2018. Photo courtesy the Red Tutu Trot

In 2016, UW–Madison’s student organization Cardiac on Campus had its inaugural year, after the sudden death of Brittany Derynda’s brother, Jon Derynda.

The 20-year-old had just finished a half marathon and went into cardiac arrest. By the time paramedics arrived it was too late to save him. In response, Brittany Derynda and her cousin Jessie Miller, who were sophomores at the time, planned a 5k race along Lakeshore Path in honor of Jon Derynda called the Red Tutu Trot.

Heart disease and cardiac arrest affects both young and old populations, yet cardiac health seems to rarely be on the minds of college students. Cardiac on Campus has the goal of changing that. The group has AED- and CPR-certified a network of more than 500 students who now have the skills to respond to sudden cardiac arrest. 

Students wearing athletic clothes and tutus pose with Bucky Badger.

Runners pose with Bucky Badger at the event. Photo courtesy of Red Tutu Trot

The race will be at 1 p.m. on Sunday, October 6, along the Howard Temin Lakeshore Path, starting in Lot 60.o Cost is $10 for students and $25 for non-students, with the price increasing by $5 after Sept. 25. You can register online hereTutus are available for purchase with online registration.

The group focuses on fundraising in order to educate and implement life saving techniques used to prepare for and prevent cardiac emergencies. The Red Tutu Trot is the group’s cornerstone fundraising event and this year it’s collaborating with the Wisconsin Homecoming Committee to kick off Homecoming week. 

On Sunday, Oct. 6,  participants get to wear flashy red tutus and better their personal heart health while raising money and awareness for cardiovascular health. 

In addition to the trot, there will be hands-on CPR lessons with dummies, workout class passes to local fitness studios and heart healthy swag from local businesses.

Proceeds from the race go towards free monthly CPR and AED training sessions around campus, as well as to purchase and place AEDs in spots they have prioritized by location. Since 2018 they have donated two AEDs to be placed in residence halls. This year Cardiac on Campus will purchase an additional two AEDs to be donated to University Housing.

Prizes include packs of class passes to Cyclebar, Dragonfly Hot Yoga, KAMPS, Inner Fire; Sets of tickets to a Madison Mallards game; Green Bay Packers swag and a giftcard to the UW Bookstore. Plenty of food will be provided.