Cast of community characters perform this weekend in free Dancing with the Stars event

By Correne Martin

Families interested in fun and free entertainment locally will want to come out to the Dancing with the Stars shows at St. Gabriel’s School basement in Prairie du Chien on Friday evening and Sunday afternoon. A variety of amateur characters from the community and school staff have been paired up to leave a lasting impression on the dance floor—all in front of a crowd.

On Friday, doors will open at 6 p.m. and the performers will take the stage at 7 p.m. On Sunday, the doors will open at noon and the show will start at 1 p.m.

Dancers have been assigned a decade of music and the liberty to put together a two-minute routine for the audience. They will be wearing effervescent costumes and grooving to some of the most popular tunes of their respective decades. Each performance is anticipated to engage the crowd and amuse all ages with a little bit of comedy—and perhaps a few semi-earnest attempts to master the technicalities of the dances. Kelli Saxe and her dance team from Prairie du Chien High School have been assisting the couples with some dance pointers leading up to their performances.

Young families and people of all ages and associations are invited to enjoy the free Dancing with the Stars shows.

“It seems like our young families need somewhere they can get involved and have it not be a fundraiser. The goal of Dancing with the Stars is to bring people out to get to know each other,” said Mary Stoeffler, one of the event’s organizers.

Those braving the lights and cameras, and their assigned decade, will include:

•Mike Fischer and Marci Atkinson-1980s;

•Wade Marlow and Lisa Dyer - ‘80s;

•Norb Aschom and Jean Pelleymounter - ‘40s;

•Rose Ziel and Dan Titlbach - ‘50s;

•Kurt Kravchuk and Annie Beinborn -‘60s;

•Luana Stiemke and Aaron Kramer - ‘70s;

•Jim Welch and Kathy Igou - ‘50s; and

•Kerri Weber and Ken Quick - ‘90s.

Judges holding the dancers’ feet to the fire will be Bill Huser, Lori Hemmer and Chad Abram. Winners both days will take home a local version of the famed mirror ball trophy.

Mary Stoeffler and Dave Hemmer will serve as emcees for the action-packed shows.

Concessions and a 50/50 raffle will be offered. Stoeffler said proceeds will go toward providing more enjoyable programs like this for the public. But she stresses that there is no admission fee for either show.

“We just want people to come out and have fun,” she said.

Stoeffler added that this event will hopefully take place next year too, especially given the great response from interested community dancers.

“We had an overwhelming response. We actually had too many who wanted to dance,” she said.

Don’t miss out on a few hours of rib-tickling leisure this weekend. The public is welcome to attend both free shows, Friday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m.

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