By Tia Lynn Ivey
Madison’s “stars” sashayed across the Madison-Morgan Cultural Center stage last week for the Eighth Annual Dancing with the Madison Stars, the premier fundraising for the Madison-Morgan Boys and Girls Club.
“It’s a packed house for the big night!” said a Boys and Girls Club representative of the sold out event.
“I was just amazed at the talent of all of our dance teams! The time and sacrifice that the teams make on behalf of our Club and our kids is just amazing!” Said Karen Robertson, senior executive director of the Madison-Morgan County Boys & Girls Club. “Our Club is incredibly blessed by the generosity of all of our friends and supporters in the Madison community. The spirit of volunteerism and philanthropy is a large part of what allows us to keep our blue doors open during after-school and summer hours.”
“It’s so gratifying that Dancing with Madison’s Stars has become so popular that it sells out every year and the money raised supports the outstanding programs offered to Boys & Girls Club members from kindergarten through high school!” Dr. Babs Johnston, a Madison-Morgan County Boys & Girls Club board member.
The local community looks forward every year to seeing familiar faces take the stage to dance for a good cause. The volunteer performers danced their hearts out to raise money for the Madison-Morgan Boys and Girls Club, which serves Morgan County’s underprivileged children.
Nine teams took the stage to compete last Thursday evening in front of a supportive crowd.
James Martin and Claire Nunn, who performed a “Ho Down” routine featuring some of their students, won both the Judge’s Choice and the People’s Choice Award.
The first runner up for People’s Choice went to Dr. Josh and Jacquelyn Whetzel. Second runner up for People’s Choice went to Larry Massey and Brenda Peters. First Runner up for Judge’s Choice went to Austin Beushausen and Ciara Pemberton. Second runner up went to Matti Griffin and Taylor Faust.
Other dancers included: Jolonda Cosby and Shannon Crowe, Skip Basinger and Chris Lambert, and Jim Irish and Conny Kullman.
“Since 2012 there has been another very important Thursday in November besides Thanksgiving which is our annual Dancing With Madison’s Stars that benefits the Madison-Morgan County Boys & Girls Club!” said Nancy Vaughan, co-chair of Madison-Morgan County Boys & Girls Club’s board. “I am always amazed and gratified as I watch our generous community come together to support an event which helps to provide funds for our after-school programs and summer day camp for so many young people in our community. This generosity comes from so many in our community – dancers who practice long hours, judges who provide entertaining banter with the dancers, restaurants and individual cooks who provide their tastiest treats, volunteers who help with lighting and sound and a large committee which works long hours behind the scenes to make this night special for all! As a local board member of Madison-Morgan County Boys & Girls Club since 2008, it has been my privilege to be a part of this event because I see firsthand the positive Impact which the club has on our community!”
Vaughan was thrilled to hear this year’s Youth of the Year speak at the event, showing how important the work of the club is to local youth.
“As the 8th Annual Dancing With the Madison’s Stars began with smiling Club members dancing and our Youth of the Year Ashton Brannon speaking about the positive impact the Club has had on him, I thought how fortunate we are to live in a community that supports our young people,” said Vaughan. “It is indeed worth every minute of preparation and every dollar raised to make a difference in the life of a child! Thank you to all who made our evening a success!”