‘Sublette All-Stars’ shine bright
By Joy Ufford, [email protected]
PINEDALE – The crowd-pleasing annual fundraiser “Dancing with the Sublette Stars” certainly brings benefits in the form of thousands of dollars for the Children’s Learning Centers in Pinedale and Big Piney over the past seven years years.
The amount raised at last week’s “Dancing with the Sublette All-Stars” April 26 family night and April 27 grand finale isn’t yet totaled.
Even with that laudable purpose, the men and women who transformed themselves for those “Dancing with the Sublette Stars” weekends into stylish tango dancers, graceful waltzers, Latin samba sizzlers, bad boys and bad girls also accomplished another wonderful thing.
They made their audiences feel good – even great – with the welcomed break from the everyday with their gusto, poise and humor. It started as a one-night show and quickly grew to two nights so everyone supporting the performers and CLC students could get a glimpse.
Five couples took over the stage at Sheppard Auditorium in the Pinedale High School. Thursday’s preview was a warm-up for Friday’s all-out all-star program, bringing the close to a wonderful chapter that turned ordinary people into extraordinary performers. Frances Cuprill and Brittany McGettrick choreographed and coached the dancers for weeks.
Another challenge for this year’s event was the Women of DWTSS facing off the Men of DWTSS, with six women in purple showing they had it all down when it came to six guys in white T-shirts.
The Women of DWTSS were Windy Noble, Rachel Weksler, Lisa Liserio, Janel Scurlock, Tera Adams and Keri Cross and stole the audience’s favor and team trophies. Later at the post-party at Rendezvous Pointe, they won another set of trophies for Patron’s Choice Group Award.
The Men of DWTSS were Brian Gray, Tom Rider, Blake Coble, Tyler Swafford, Joe McGettrick and Brett McLain, sporting a sling.
McLain had already danced a very energetic samba with the fiery, red-hot Lisanne Fear, their choreography adapted to his injury. They were the third couple to dance.
The show opened with jungle maiden Bridgett Wilson and her target Matt Boyce dancing the perfect merengue.
Buffed and tan, Wilson and Boyce won the glittering 2018 Grand Ballroom Champion trophy chosen by the judges, Josh Harber, Tami Crosson and Andy Nelson and announced by eternally elegant emcees Sue Holz and Ward Wise.
The awards ceremony was held at Rendezvous Pointe, where CLC’s Becky Gregory and Kat Wolaver congratulated and thanked everyone.
Quickstepping couple Fender and Jasmine Allison won Patron’s Choice trophies for raising the most money to benefit CLC. The third couple to perform, Shaunna Bennett portrayed silent emotions to the moody classic “Ain’t No Sunshine When She’s Gone” (even as her partner Andrew Walker wore his wife’s capris…)
People’s Choice went to the dynamic duo of flapper Emily Makelky and gangster Sandy Sletten, whose dynamic feetwork and sheer fun turned the cha-cha into an amazing onstage adventure.