SIDNEY — “Preparations are underway and Sidney Alive is looking forward to a wonderful parade to get us in the mood for the holidays,” said 2018 Winter Wonderland Parade Chairperson Joe Moniaci.
Moniaci has announced the 2018 grand marshal is local entrepreneur Sharon Eikenberry. Eikenberry is a graduate and 2003 Hall of Honor inductee of Sidney High School. She has devoted her life to the Sidney/Shelby County arts community touching the lives of thousands of young people and adults with her skills and love for the performing arts.
In 1980, she opened Sharon’s School of Dance in downtown Sidney. She directed and choreographed ballets, musicals and other variety shows as well as wrote original ballets over the last 38 years. She also started the non-profit organization, Sidney Dance Company.
Eikenberry began dancing in Bellefontaine, Ohio at age 8, and furthered her training in Dayton under the tutelage of Mr. Rodriguez, Miss Jo and Miss Bess Saylor. She received her B.A. in Dance from Butler University, with additional training in NYC under Charles Kelly, Phil Black, Luigi and Paul Gearhart. Just one year prior to opening the studio, Eikenberry traveled as a performer with the Roger Hess National Tour and performed in the Chicago Review. During this time she received her actor’s equity card.
In the past 38 years, Eikenberry has choreographed over 100 productions, including “A Chorus Line,” “West Side Story” and “Fiddler on the Roof” with OSU and “Grease” at Ohio Northern. For Sidney Dance Company, she has directed and choreographed ballets for “The Nutcracker,” “Coppelia,” “The Source,” “Aesop’s Fables,” “Sleeping Beauty,” “La Fille Mal Gardee,” “Cinderella,” “Peter and the Wolf,” “Degas” and “Alice in Wonderland.” Her repertoire also includes the directing musicals such as “The Wizard of Oz,” “Can-Can,” “Babes in Toyland,” “Peter Pan,” “Narnia,” “It Happened in Hamelin,” “Annie,” “Seusical,” “Cinderella” and “Snow White.”
“This season, Sharon has changed up her roles with the Sidney Dance Company and Sharon’s School of Dance. Sharon now sits as a board member of the Sidney Dance Company as her protégé, Molly McFarland, takes over as Artistic Director. Her new role with Sharon’s School of Dance is now advisory as she guides Molly through taking over ownership of the business. “Given that this season marks the end of an era, it seemed the perfect time to honor Sharon and all that she’s contributed to not only Downtown Sidney, but our community as a whole”, said Sidney Alive Director Amy Breinich. “We are so pleased to work with both businesses throughout the years and glad to see that what Sharon has built will continue for decades to come.”
This year’s parade will also feature the Reason for the Season lighting ceremony starting at 6:30 p.m. on the east steps of the Shelby County Courthouse as well as various food and novelty vendors. The downtown Christmas lights will all light up at the end of the lighting ceremony and the parade will step off at 7:30 p.m. sharp. As in previous years, spectators are asked to remain on the sidewalks and to stay off the street.
For more information regarding the parade, volunteering or more, contact the Sidney Alive Office at 937-658-2268 or firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the website, sidneyalive.org.