Star-studded event raises funds

Last year’s Dancing with the Seymour Stars event raised around $100,000 to support Seymour Main Street and the Boys & Girls Club of Seymour.

But organizers, participants and sponsors want to bring in even more this year and are pulling out all of the stops to make that happen.

A total of 17 dancers in eight acts will take the stage Sept. 26 at Celebrations in Seymour for the third annual Dancing with the Seymour Stars.

This year’s dancers are Miss America 2009 Katie Stam Irk dancing with her father, Keith Stam; Tom Lewis, senior director of finance and supply for Kremers Urban Pharmaceuticals, dancing with Patti Terrell and Elizabeth Copeland; Nancy Fleming, former AmeriCorps coordinator, paired with Brent Byers; Meredith Henry, social worker at Seymour-Redding Elementary School, dancing with Scott Gray; Seymour High School band director Kevin Cottrill dancing with his wife, Laura Cottrill; Immanuel Lutheran Church youth minister Matt Nieman dancing with Katrina Hardwick; orthodontist John Hiester paired with Michelle Carter; and Dr. Kris Williams of Schneck Medical Center dancing with his wife, Stacey Williams.

The event is modeled after the popular “Dancing with the Stars” television show and also has proved to be a popular fundraiser in Columbus.

Each act comes up with and rehearses its own dance with some assistance from Brent and Ronda Byers, co-owners and instructors at Dance Street Studio in Columbus.

A variety of dance styles will be performed, from hip-hop to ballroom.

There will be two shows, a matinee at 2 p.m. and an evening performance at 6:30 p.m. The evening performance, which is for sponsors and dancers’ families only, includes a meal and cash bar.

Tickets for the matinee will go on sale Saturday and are available at the Boys & Girls Club in Seymour. They can be purchased from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday and after that from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Cost is $20 if tickets are purchased in advance and $25 the day of the event.

Evening performance tickets are $75, and sponsors can reserve a table for eight.

The winner of the show is not determined by dancing ability, but by who can raise the most money in votes. All dancers raise money on their own beforehand and then receive votes from the audience after the performances.

Donations are tax-deductible.

Anyone unable to attend the show can still vote for their favorite dancers with $1 equaling one vote. All donations can be made at the Boys & Girls Club.

Dr. Charles Calhoun and Tammy Lewis won in 2013, and Tom and Dana Bollinger took home the first-place trophy last year. Calhoun and Lewis will be returning to the stage to perform again during intermission along with the Dancing Divas.

All proceeds from the event will be split between Seymour Main Street and the Boys & Girls Club to provide funds for projects to improve downtown Seymour and programming for local youth.

Event chairwoman Dody Bowman said the goal is always to bring in more money than the previous year.

“We always want to do better,” she said.

And she doesn’t think that will be difficult to do because of how popular Dancing with the Seymour Stars is.

“These are two great organizations, and the event is so entertaining, everyone wants to be there,” she said. “Last year, at the end of the show, we had people telling us we needed to have more dancers because they didn’t want to go home.”

Bowman said the participants are in it to win it and will put on a great show.

“We’re extremely excited because we’ve built up a lot of momentum and the expectations are high,” she said. “The participants are passionate about dancing and raising money, and it’s going to be a night not to be missed.”

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What: Dancing with the Seymour Stars 2015

Where: Celebrations at Shops at Seymour, 357 Tanger Blvd., Suite 101

When: Sept. 26, matinee at 2 p.m. and evening show at 6:30 p.m.

Tickets: $20 if purchased in advance; $25 day of the show for matinee; $75 for evening performance, with table reservations of eight available

Tickets can be purchased at the Boys & Girls Club of Seymour, 950 N. O’Brien St., beginning Saturday.

Benefits: Boys & Girls Club of Seymour and Seymour Main Street

Dancers: Miss America 2009 Katie Stam Irk and her father, Keith Stam; Tom Lewis, Patti Terrell and Elizabeth Copeland; Nancy Fleming and Brent Byers; Meredith Henry and Scott Gray; Kevin Cottrill and his wife, Laura Cottrill; Matt Nieman and Katrina Hardwick; John Hiester and Michelle Carter; and Dr. Kris Williams and his wife, Stacey Williams

Information: Any business, organization or individual interested in being a sponsor for the event or anyone wanting to purchase tickets can call the Boys & Girls Club of Seymour at 812-522-2434