|Bend voters should decide the fate of the council-passed
Others step in
to help cheer 17-year-old to title in novel fund-raiser
|Teen dances to
record after partner's stumble
Drew Gamble (L), 17, kept on dancing
Tuesday on video game, hoping to set world record; friend Brian
Lawler, 15, was among those who stepped in after friend was tripped
up by fast song. (Photo by: Barney
By Barney Lerten
Last Updated: Wednesday, November 26, 2003 10:38
Reference Code: AR-12608
November 25 - Drew Gamble earned the right to sleep right
through Thanksgiving, or at least a good chunk of it, when he
officially broke an unofficial dance-machine record by almost 90
minutes early Wednesday, then headed home after almost 37 ½ hours of
dancing to raise funds for a worthy cause.
His parents and friends cheered and
applauded at 6:23 a.m. when Gamble, a 17-year-old Mountain View High
student, finally called it quits, nearly a day after his schoolmate
and partner, Chris Machado, 16 failed to hit the right steps and was
disqualified from their joint record-setting effort.
leery at 5:30 (Wednesday night) whether he was going to continue,
but he plugged on,” said Carol Sholes of the Space Balls Arcade at
the Bend River Mall, where the event began Monday at 5
Tired legs? Well, yeah, sure – numb, in fact. But sleep
was Gamble's real enemy as he surpassed the 24-hour mark on what
supporters said already was a world record at that
Spirits were high Monday evening as Gamble and Machado
kicked off their record attempt on Konami’s “Dance Dance Revolution
Extreme” machine, located at the Space Balls Arcade at Bend River
But around 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, 17 ½ hours into the
effort, Machado unfortunately was talked by some in the crowd to try
a faster-tempo song, and couldn’t keep his fleet feet hitting the
right lit arrows in sequence, matching the video monitor’s
characters on the small, disco-like dance floor.
not have listened to the prodding of the crowd,” said arcade owner
Dan Chase. But once Machado headed home – presumably to catch up on
sleep – other teens stepped in to do some dancing and cheer Gamble
on, with some yawns included.
And so, Gamble soldiered on by
himself, sticking to the slower-tempo songs, for the slow and steady
win the race. Asked at midday Tuesday the toughest part, he said,
“Now it’s staying awake. At first, it was the
pain in my legs.”
|As long as we follow all the
criteria, it will be a record.|
|Space Balls Arcade owner,
Grandma's House board member|
Becky Gamble was on hand to help (with some liniment for the legs)
and cheer on their son, as was husband Richard, when one or the
other isn’t downtown running their store, Ozstralia.
the famous dance marathons of the Depression era, when just standing
upright was the whole goal, the youths were tested on their
coordination, as well as their stamina.
Guinness Book of
World Records criteria allow just one 15-minute break every eight
hours and only 30 seconds between songs to take a break. There also
must be two adult witnesses throughout the event.
two Washington state teens who used the combination video game-dance
machine for 36 hours straight didn’t follow all those rules, so
theirs was an unofficial record, begging to be broken.
(Drew) is setting a world record as we speak. As long as we follow
all the criteria, it will be a record,” Chase said Tuesday evening,
but he noted that it won’t go in the Guinness book unless the record
stands until the next printing.
Proceeds help home for pregnant
There was a variety of helpful nourisment on
hand beside the video game console: Water, GatorAde, pretzels, rice
crackers - as well as a jar of something called "Sore No
When the longer breaks come, “there’s a beehive to the
john,” said Chase, a board member with Grandma’s House, a
faith-based nonprofit home and outreach ministry for homeless or
abused teens who are pregnant. People signed up to pledge a certain
amount for each hour the record try continues, and there was a jar
at the counter for others to give to the program.
not doing as well as I hoped” in
the fund-raising effort, Chase said around noon Tuesday as the
halfway mark neared. They were still tallying the pledge sheets
|Me and his dad have always told
him, ‘Reach for the stars.’|
|Mom of dance-machine
Some friends vowed to stick it out for as long as
Gamble lasted. “I’ve been here the whole time,” said Brian Lawler,
15, who nevertheless was going at quite a faster tempo than his
marathoning dance partner.
If nothing else, the video game
variation can keep participants in shape. Machado has lost about 90
pounds since he began using the dance machine regularly, and both
have very low heart rates.
“I think it’s just fantastic they
are doing it,” said family friend Patricia Facey.
Drew’s mom: “I think it’s a good thing that he’s doing. Me and his
dad have always told him, ‘Reach for the stars.’”
The teen, a
snowboarder, skipped Mt. Bachelor’s opening day, so he wouldn’t get
hurt and miss the marathon-record opportunity. Becky Gamble said her
son has been a regular on the machine, riding his bike from
“It’s something for kids to do who aren’t into teen
sports,” she said. “His heart rate is 51 (beats per minute). You and
I could only hope for a heart rate that low.”
What else does
he do, for fun? “He’s a computer wizard, and he’s been an artist,”
his mom said.
At their 9 a.m. break, the teens said they were
pretty much numb from the waist down, she added.
teens are stepping up to the plate, to help keep him going and
support him,” she said, about halfway through his effort. “A couple
of marathoners and triathletes who we don’t even know stopped in
earlier to offer their
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