On the heels of last year’s sold-out inaugural event, a new crop of contestants will join the Dancing with the Shuswap Stars event for its second showing.
Recently, dancers, City Dance instructors, judges and organizers got to meet and learn a few foxtrot steps as a warm-up before lessons begin in September.
The next Dancing with the Shuswap Stars will take place Friday, Nov. 17 at the SASCU Recreation Centre.
Money raised from the Dancing with the Shuswap Stars is contributed towards the Larch Hills chalet expansion fund. Currently, the addition on the chalet is taking shape as excavation and pouring of the footings and foundation have been completed. Traditional Log Homes has also begun work on the log structure.
But more funds are needed to see the project through.
City Dance is a major sponsor of this event with their instructors contributing many hours of lessons to transform the dance volunteers into accomplished performers.
Heather Stranks, instructor and co-owner of City Dance Okanagan, commented that “it was great to meet the people that I will be working with. They are an enthusiastic group and it will be great fun working with them.”
The program this year will feature six couples competing in the amateur division and six singles competing with an instructor in the Professional-Amateur (Pro-Am) Division.
Besides the dance competitions, the audience will again get the chance to hit the dance floor to the lively music of the seven-piece band, the Waxmen and the Klister Sisters, who had their debut public performance at last year’s event.
Showcase performances will feature some surprises that will keep the audience mesmerized throughout the evening.
Light refreshments again will be available as part of the evening, as well as a cash bar.
Ticket prices remain at $50 each for a full night of entertainment, snacks and dancing enjoyment.
Last year, tickets were sold out a month before the event, so a heads-up that tickets for the general public will go on sale at Wearabouts on Oct. 1.
Something new this year is the opportunity for dancers to obtain votes ahead of time.
As some people aren’t able to attend the actual dance competition, they can support their favorite dancer by putting cash into the dancer’s donation envelope, which might be displayed in their home or business.
These donations will be converted into $5 star votes at the event. The pre-sold totals will be added to the audience star votes and the judges’ points to help determine the winners in both the pro-am and amateur contests.
AND HERE ARE THE CONTESTANTS…
In the Couples category:
• Ivan and Jamie Gracias are the owners of the Cantina Vallarta restaurant. They will be instructed by Jens Goerner and will perform a kizomba number.
• Dr. Stacey Kirkman and his partner Fran Burman, a pharmacist, will be dancing the hustle, instructed by Orlando Robertson.
• Chopping Crew co-owner and hair stylist Derek Leyenhorst and his wife, Cleo, a makeup artist, will dance the jive. Their instructor is Ingalise Abbott.
• Jared King, vice-principal at Shuswap Middle School and Andi King, a teacher at Bastion Elementary, will be performing salsa. They are instructed by Nic Faucher.
• Dentists Brandon Schiffner and Kristy Chu will be performing a bachata number under the guidance of Simone Goerner.
• Avid Larch Hills skiers Rob van Varseveld, an owner at Mill Tech Industries and his wife, Ingrid, a teacher at Bastion Elementary, are performing the rumba. Their instructor is Heather Stranks.
In the Pro-Am category:
• Larch Hills ski club president Duncan Moore will dance the tango with Heather Stranks.
• Realtor Rochelle Dale will samba with instructor Jens Goerner.
• City councillor Louise Wallace Richmond will perform the quick step with Nic Faucher.
• Andrea Roberts, a music teacher and Shuswap Theatre actor, will dance nightclub 2-step with Orlando Robertson.
• Askew’s owner David Askew will polka with Simone Goerner.
• Fred Green, a bus driver, singer and actor, will take on the cha cha with instructor Ingalise Abbott.