Ten weeks of practice by a dozen contestants culminated in another successful Dancing with the Shuswap Stars on Friday.
Rob and Ingrid van Varseveld took top marks in the couples challenge with a sensuous rumba and Fred Green and his instructor Ingalise Abbott were surprised by their win in the pro-am division, given the judges’ marks.
But, like the TV version of Dancing with the Stars, the judges’ marks are not the whole story – the popular vote speaks loudly.
Jared and Andi King danced to second place in the couples division with a spirited salsa and, in the pro-am, a technically challenging tango gave Duncan Moore and Heather Stranks second place.
All the dancers were very well received by the sold-out crowd, with loud applause accompanied by shouts and whistles of appreciation.
The dancers learned their routines from the instructors from City Dance, which was a major sponsor for the event.
There were more shouts of appreciation on Monday as organizers announced that $43,000 was deposited in the bank. The committee is hoping expenses will amount to about $12,00, clearing $30,000 to continue the expansion of the Larch Hills Chalet.
Last year’s event raised $21,600 bringing total donations from all community and granting sources to about $320,000 of the estimated $400,000 to $450,000 needed to complete the project.
The event was organized by 12 members of the committee, most of them Larch Hills Nordic Society members, along with a couple of Shuswap Hospice members looking toward the possibility of taking it over as their fundraiser when the chalet expansion has been fully funded.
Local band Hot Wax and the Klister Sisters donated their time and drew enthusiastic audience members to the floor in between the scheduled performances.
Judges Tracy Hughes, Carolyn Wonacott and David Izik-Dzurko encouraged dancers and praised all the dancers’ efforts, which may be why the organizing committee has already been approached by folks wanting to sign up for next year’s event.
As always, MC Steve Fabro kept the show rolling with his wit and occasionally acerbic comments.