Dancing with the Stars of Rutherford County is back
RUTHERFORDTON — It's time to put on your dancing shoes and empty your pockets for season three of Dancing with the Stars of Rutherford County.
Dancing with the Stars of Rutherford County is a fundraiser for the R-S Central High School senior class trip and to send the SkillsUSA Section II Club to their state competition in Greensboro.
Last year, the show raised $7,500. This year's goal is $10,000.
"We raised a lot of money last year, and this is a fun way to get everyone together," said Travis Toms, SkillsUSA advisor.
There are nine couples competing in this year's show. Each couple is comprised of a high school or college student, who is considered the star, and an adult from the community. The show has been put together by SkillsUSA advisors Travis Toms, Rhonda Medford and senior advisors Karen Morrow and Rebecca Toms.
"This is the first time I have done this. My older brother did it last year and it sounded fun. Plus, it is a good way to raise money," said student participant Brandy Whitener.
For Jennifer King, an English teacher at R-S Central, this is her fourth time competing in the show.
"It is a way to help the school and be involved with the students. I like that I can help fund-raise and that the money goes to a great cause," King said. "In the last four years that I have participated, I have raised about $5,000."
Along with raising money for the school, the student winners also have a chance to receive a scholarship.
According to Travis Toms, first place winners will receive two mirror ball trophies and the student of the first place couple will receive a $750 scholarship. The second place winners will receive an acrylic trophy and the student will receive a $500 scholarship.
"I'm not a dancer, but I'm doing this because it is fun and challenging. I also want a chance at that scholarship," said student participant Randy Whitener.
The couples have been using any free time to practice their routines, which were all choreographed by Rebecca Toms. Many of the dances were taken straight from the ABC television show "Dancing with the Stars."
"Rebecca is so dedicated and she is always here when the couples are practicing. Usually there are four or five couples practicing at a time, and she has all of the dances memorized," King said.
Along with the competing couples, audience members will receive more entertainment from special performers.
State Principal of the Year, Brad Teague and Amie Sessoms will open the show. Following intermission, there will be a performance from the 19-Time National Champion Bailey Mountain Cloggers from Mars Hill College as well as a special "Thriller" routine from Matthew "MJ" Milam of East Rutherford High School.
Rebecca Toms says that they have tried to model their event after the television show as much as possible.
"I think modeling our event after the real television show has helped attract an audience. People know what the show is and will come out. The crowd that we have are usually in their thirties, forties and fifties. But, we would like for more of the students to come and see their friends dance," said Rebecca Toms, senior advisor. "We try to keep this as close to the real television show as possible."
Travis Toms says that he is really grateful for all of the businesses who have helped by sponsoring the show.
"The first year we did this we had 13 sponsors. Last year we had 33 and this year we have over 80 sponsors. So, the show has grown every year. It is amazing how businesses have come together to support the school," Travis Toms said. "We are doing well with this, and we expect to have about 1,000 people attend the show."
Couples this year will be:
Brandy Whitener and Scott Bowers
Randy Whitener and Jennifer King
Savannah Scala and Keith Ezell
Hailey Jones and Wayned Jones
Cassidy Ruppe and Joe Ruppe
Jacob Struble and Danielle Guffey
Megan Long and Kevin Hodge
Montana Bright and Ritchie Garland
Jay'Len Holis and April Shipman
The show is Saturday, Nov. 3 at 7 p.m. at R-S Central High School. Tickets are $5 for adults and children five and under are free.