TERRE HAUTE —
It’s not dance moves that concern Heather Michael, one of 13 area celebrities announced Wednesday as participants for the 2014 Dancing with the Terre Haute Stars
It’s wearing high heels.
“I don’t even wear heels ever so I will go invest in some heels and walk around my house practicing,” said Michael, representing Sony DADC.
“Then I will bust out some Mambo dance steps so I don’t break an ankle or fall on my face during the event,” Michael said. “It could be a little bit of a challenge” she said of the Mambo, a style she has never danced.
“I was a Zumba instructor for a while so I did do a lot of that Latin-type dance steps so it should be easy for me to catch on to,” she said.
Still, Michael said she is “nervous. I can’t believe it is not even until Sept. 26 and I am like, ah, already, with the nervous tingles and everything,” she said.
The 2014 Dancing with the Terre Haute Stars is scheduled for Sept. 26 at Hulman Center. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and dinner at 7 p.m., with dancing starting at 8 p.m. The event is sold out, it was announced Wednesday.
Union Hospital spokesman Mike King introduced the dancers at Union Hospital’s Professional Office Building with the music “Staying Alive,” by the Bee Gees.
The event is a fundraiser for Chances and Services for Youth. Chances for Indiana Youth and Community Alliance and Services for Young Children merged in April 2013 to form Chances and Services for Youth.
The dance in the first year raised $33,000, which increased to $132,000 last year, the seventh year for the dance, said Brandon Halleck, chief operating officer for CASY and a dance instructor.
The total raised over the last seven years is nearly $650,000, Halleck added.
Jim Archer, assistant professor of criminal justice at Ivy Tech Community College, will dance the Merengue.
“I have done a little Rumba before, but I think it will be fine. I am looking forward to it,” he said.
“Just keep the positive attitude right?” he said. “I have been wanting to learn how to dance for a while, and this is for a good cause, obviously, so I thought I would bite the bullet and do it.”
“I watch ‘Dancing with the Stars’ on TV quite a bit,” he said. Like contestants on the TV show, Archer said, “I will give it my all.”
Molly Price, representing Harsha Behavioral Center, will dance the Foxtrot.
“No! I didn’t want that. It is so fast,” she said after learning what dance she will perform.
“I spend four days a week at a dance studio with my daughter, but I have never taken a dance class in my life,” Price said.
“I hear the terminology but it doesn’t mean my feet will do what they are supposed to,” Price said. Unlike Michael, Price said she wears heels every day.
“I am not afraid to get out in front of people, but I am nervous. I don’t want to fall,” she said. “I do watch Dancing with the Stars. I watch pretty much any dancing thing...but I am not ready for it, just pretending to be ready for it,” she smiled. “I am excited and nervous.”
Bob Brown, store manager at Kroger, will dance the Swing. Brown said he has danced “a little bit at a dance studio. I took lessons a couple years ago,” he said. “I am terrific being in front of a lot of people. It will make me very nervous. I think I will be comfortable when it is all done.”
“I think I just need to get in better shape,” he added.
Dancers will receive 10 dance lessons at The Dance Studio in preparation. Five instructors will be assigned to the 13 celebrities.
Two previous contestants gave some tips to this year’s dancers.
“Do yourself a favor and spend a day at CASY. The work they do there is phenomenal. Chances really is a life raft for many of our children in Vigo County,” said Bernice Helman, who danced last year.
Helman recommended dancers do fundraising early and get small donations, which can add up. She suggested phoning people and using social media for fundraising.
Another previous dancer Ron Hernandez suggested dancers immediately get their dance shoes and wear them as much as possible to get used to “the floor on how you carry on with your feet in those shoes.”
“Also, just have fun with it. Enjoy the journey,” Hernandez said.
• Patrick Sims, First Financial Bank.
• Kyle Turner, Union Hospital
• Alpa Patel, Vigo County School Corp.
• Marla Flowers, Hulman & Co.
• Heather Michael, Sony DADC
• Michele Funkhouser, Kellogg’s
• Jeanette Winchester, Simple to Elegant
• Rashmi Patel, Vigo Health Pharmacy
• Bob Brown, Kroger
• Jim Archer, Ivy Tech Community College
• Jeff Lee, Warrior Institute
• Molly Price, Harsha Behavioral Center
• Dana Winklepleck, WTWO-TV
Reporter Howard Greninger can be reached at 812-231-4204 or howard.