PIQUA — It was a full house on Saturday, April 22, as the Piqua Arts Council hosted their 12th edition of Dancing with the Piqua Stars.
With a sold-out crowd, a lively cast and loads of sparkle, the event was truly a success. Altogether, the six participating couples were able to raise over $25,000 for the Piqua Arts Council. These funds will be used to support community programming like Rock Piqua!, the Bourbon Affair, Art 4 Everyone, the Annual Fine Art Exhibition and more.
The 2023 cast spent previous months hosting raffles, special events and fundraisers in support of their team as they raced for the Mirror Ball Trophy. Additionally, they were paired with various local dance instructors with whom they practiced a three-minute dance routine. Instructors this year included Rick and Judy Bowerman of RJ Ballroom, Liz Maxson, Tammy Bellamy-Chaney and Leslie Howell.
The couples performed at an afternoon Dessert Matinee and then again that evening at the dinner show. After each performance, we heard from judges Lorna Swisher, Kari Foster and Esther Ehrstine (matinee), as well as Jim Oda, Michael Shepherd and Kelsie Clayton (dinner). Judges were asked to score the dancers on their performance, as scores were combined and a final decision was made for the winners of the Technical Merit Award and the Most Entertaining Award.
Piqua Arts Council Executive Directo, Jordan Knepper and emcee Jim Gover Jr. shared their opening remarks, and then the dancing began. Kicking off the evening were partners Dylan Schenck and Mackenzie Mikel who performed a disco jazz to “Dancing Queen” by ABBA; followed by David Novotny and Lea Tyler who performed a mixed style dance to a mashup of “Let’s Hear it for the Boy” by Deniece Williams and more.
After a brief intermission that brought some votes in from the crowd, more dancing commenced with a fusion style dance by Nathan and Lindsey Penrod to a surprise mashup of “Come Away with Me” by Norah Jones and “Yeah!” by Usher (feat. Lil Jon & Ludacris). Next up was Ryan and Kate Tremblay who performed a cha cha to “Sway” by Michael Buble and then partners Krissy O’Malley and Lindsay Schultz who performed a jazz and hip-hop dance to a series of Michael Jackson songs. Last, but certainly not least, Adam Sherlock and Brittney Tyler ended the night with a bang with their jazz & hip-hop routine to a mashup of “Let’s Get Loud” by Jennifer Lopez and more.
It was certainly not an easy decision for the judges with quality performances from each member of the 2023 cast, but at the end of the night the winners were announced. Pulling away with the Technical Merit Trophy were dancers, Ryan and Kate Tremblay, whose routine was instructed by Rick and Judy Bowerman. The Most Entertaining Award went to Nathan and Lindsey Penrod, whose routine was instructed by Liz Maxson. And as if one award wasn’t enough, the Penrods also went home with the big trophy of the night and the 2023 Mirror Ball Champion title, having singlehandedly raised over $9,000 for the Arts Council.
The success of this fundraiser is made possible through its volunteers, sponsors, donors, attendees, the Romer’s Catering staff, the tech crew, Hartzell Propeller, Barclay’s Men’s & Women’s Clothiers and Comfort Inn, Piqua. This event would not be what it is today without each and every one of them.
The 2023 dinner performance will be available on the Piqua Arts Council YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/@piquaarts soon, thanks to AJ Ganger & Indian Nation Station, as well as photos by Ganger Images. Learn more about the 2023 Dancing with the Piqua Stars and nominate dancers for next year here: www.PiquaArtsCouncil.org/dancing