At the Newman Center on Wednesday, the Alpha Xi Delta sisters at Youngstown State University will host their first Puzzle-A-Thon to raise money for their philanthropy, Autism Speaks.
For the Puzzle-A-Thon, teams of four will race against the clock to put together a puzzle. As the rounds continue, the puzzles get progressively harder. The event is open to the public, and registration is $5 per person.
“We wanted to do something new and something different to really catch people’s attention,” said Amanda Vestal, a sophomore and an Alpha Xi Delta sister.
Vestal has taken on the bulk of the planning. She said it’s been a stressful process, but that she’s excited to see the outcome.
Mallory Kohut said she’s looking forward to the Puzzle-A-Thon because “it’s something different.”
“We normally do a walk,” she said. “You don’t see a lot of people doing puzzles today, so it’s nice to give them something new.”
Vestal said she is confident the turnout for the Puzzle-A-Thon will be strong, and hopes to see the event grow in the future. She said she encourages everyone to participate.
“I would encourage them to come because it is a really good cause. Even if you’re not good at puzzles, find people for your team who are. You’re still donating and raising awareness,” she said.
Vestal said the sorority will still host a walk for autism during the fall semester.
“There is no actual cure for it, but what a lot of people don’t realize is that doesn’t mean they can’t function in everyday life,” Vestal said.
Vestal and the other sorority sisters all wear a puzzle piece charm on a necklace to accompany their sorority’s philanthropy. Like puzzle pieces, no two cases of autism are alike, she said.
“One of their sayings is, ‘Each puzzle piece is unique,’” Vestal said.