“Vegas, here we come!” cried the dancers descending upon Wasaga Beach for the 19th year of ‘Dancin’ For Miracles’. Some of you might be a bit confused as, according to the map, Las Vegas is quite a distance from Wasaga! But you don’t know line dancers!! The theme this year was Vegas and the dancers always like to be authentic!!
But let me back up. Dancin For Miracles (DFM) is one of the friendliest line dance events around, it is an annual reunion for line dancers from Ontario and beyond and a big fundraiser for hospice. Newbies are immediately embraced and this year there were a lot of first timers. It was terrific to see them and they were soon part of the gang.
Friday night is dance night and introduction to the instructors. For the first time there was a dance play list that had been posted on facebook and the website earlier in the week. Dancers responded well to the concept and word is that it will be back next year with a few refinements and posted earlier. It made life much more relaxed for our favourite DJs Dan Morrison and Lynn Warden as well.
Saturday morning brought Zumba with Jenny and then the Chip & Dales. Well, such excitement! The dance audience went wild as these four supple and hunky men, who turned up out of the blue, treated us to a performance that will go down in the annals of DFM history! I think they were quite happy with all the Canadian Tyre money they made from the enthusiastic audience! Then two cute furry creatures joined them for a grand finale dancing ‘Walla Walla Bing Bang’ (by Double Trouble). Names such as Valarie, Cathy, Dan, Ron, Fred and Bobby were bandied around but no-one knew for sure who these impressive performers were! (Do check out the photos and videos!)
Then time to get to the business of learnin’ some dances! There was something there for everyone. Dan taught his new dance ‘Stompin’ It Down’ that went over very well with the dancers. Tammy Wyatt, first time at the event, taught Maddison Glover’s ‘Bonaparte’s Retreat’ accompanied by Scottish dancers (only at Wasaga!). ‘Angel & Corona’ by Bailey, Sala, Bourdages & Verdonk was nicely taught by Rhonda Nadon. Big hit ‘I’ve Been Waiting For You’ by Aussies Alison Johntone & Joshua Talbot was taught by Fred Buckley, well received. Fred Whitehouse has a big hit in ‘Soul Shake’ so I was very happy to learn it from Zandra McCallum. It was so terrific to see Zandra up and dancing with us again.
Chantal Michaud, first time teaching here, brought us the cute ‘Zou Bisou Bisou’ by Canadian Choreographer Karen Tripp. I brought back ‘Pirate On The Run’, the first dance I ever wrote with Kim Ray. Many thanks for the nice comments on the dance. Then to top it off we had a Mystery Showgirl in a fabulous costume for the final teach which was ‘Rose From The Sea’ by Rep Ghazali-Meaney. I thought I heard the name ‘Bobby’ mentioned which could be short for Roberta!! But it could also mean Bobby Chong!!
Saturday night we were treated to a terrific performance from the Cruisers, they never fail to impress. Then we danced in an eclectic selection of costumes!!
Plus we won raffle prizes, the online auction and the penny auction. Sunday brought more prizes, no-one goes home empty handed from DFM and all the money raised goes to hospice. Dancers also brought toys which will be given to St. Vincent De Paul for distribution at Christmas. We gathered that the toy drive has made an enormous difference to the number of families the Society has been able to reach.
We also eat well at DFM. There is coffee and fruit every morning and an excellent lunch for just $6 on Saturday and Sunday. All this is made possible because of the volunteers who give of their time so generously. The decoration is always impressive, again thanks to volunteers. Just bringing all the prizes is an enormous and tiring job but you wouldn’t know it from the smiling faces of those volunteers. Valarie Keller, Event Director, is so dedicated and works tirelessly throughout the year getting ready, so many thanks to her and also Event Coordinators Bev Cain and Cathy Montgomery, and to ALL the volunteers for giving us an event to treasure. Next year will be the 20th anniversary and the theme will be whatever costume is your favourite from the last 19 years! Time to start checking through your wardrobe.
Many thanks to all the dancers who made this event so much fun, hope you had a smooth trip home and see you September 2020!
Note: Click on photos to see larger version. There are more photos and videos on the Dancin For Miracles Facebook Page