'Dancing With the High Point Stars' to benefit Communities In Schools

Feb. 17, 2014 @ 01:00 AM

Launching a new fundraiser can always be risky, but “Dancing With the High Point Stars” — now in its fourth year — has evolved into an event that has organizers, well, dancing for joy.
“We raised nearly $50,000 last year, so it’s done very well for us,” said Leigh Anne Kasias, coordinator of this year’s event, which will be held Saturday evening.
Proceeds benefit Communities In Schools of High Point, the nation’s leading school dropout prevention program.
While this year’s event will be in a new location — the Club Level of the International Home Furnishings Center — the same “Dancing With the High Point Stars” format from years past will be used again this year, with 10 amateur dancers (and their professional partners from Fred Astaire Dance Studios) competing for audience votes.
“The judges will give three awards — Most Votes, which goes to the dancer that raises the most money, and then Best Performance and Best Costume,” Kasias explained.
Each spectator’s ticket entitles him or her to one vote, and additional votes can be purchased for $10 apiece, with all of the proceeds benefiting Communities In Schools.
Organizers have lined up 10 dancers for the competition, who have been practicing with their professional partners:
•Edith Brady, High Point Museum.
•Busta Brown, WXII 12 News.
•Trent Cockerham, Hospice of the Piedmont.
•Shirley Cook, Communities In Schools of High Point.
•Russ Edwards, Ralph Lauren.
•Whit Holbrook, Edward Jones.
•Cathy Kirby, Starlight Youth Dance Program.
•Angela McGill, High Point Housing Authority.
•Donna Nottoli, True Path Career Counseling.
•Scott Winslow, Northwood Elementary School principal.
The emcees for the evening will be High Point civic leader Jim Morgan — who won this competition in 2011 — and Tracey McCain of WFMY News 2.
In addition to the dancing competition, the event will feature heavy hors d’oeuvres — catered by Pepper Moon Catering — as well as plenty of opportunities for spectators to take the dance floor themselves, dancing to music provided by deejay Jeff Ayers. Dancers from the Starlight Youth Dance Program will also perform.
“I think people enjoy this event because it’s such a nice evening — great food, great atmosphere, great dancing and just a lot of fun,” Kasias said. “The dancing, of course, is the centerpiece, but there’s a lot of socializing, too. It’s just a fun night.”
And there are no rules regarding attire.
“If you want to grab that cute little dress in the back of the closet that you haven’t worn in so long, go for it,” she said. “But if you want to wear something more casual, you can do that, too. It’s whatever you want to make of it. Sometimes you go to an event and it’s so stuffy — this is not stuffy, it’s fun.”
And it’s for a good cause that’s doing a lot of good in the community. Over the past several years, all of the Communities In Schools students in High Point who were eligible for graduation have graduated, according to Kasias.
“By bringing individuals and businesses from the community into the schools, and working with children from a very young age, CIS gives them the support and resources they need,” she said. “It also gives them the knowledge that they are supported in the community — they’re being wrapped up in the community’s love.”
jtomlin@hpe.com | 888-3579

Want to go?

The fourth annual “Dancing With the High Point Stars,” a fundraiser for Communities In Schools of High Point, will be held Saturday, beginning at 6 p.m., at the Club Level of the International Home Furnishings Center in downtown High Point.
In addition to the dancing competition, heavy hors d’oeuvres will be served, and there will be music of all kinds and dancing for all guests.
Tickets are $40 apiece, which includes one vote, and additional votes can be purchased for $10 each.
Tickets are available in the CIS office, located at 503 Ferndale Blvd. Call 883-6434, Ext. 26, to place your order, then pick them up at the CIS office. You can also buy tickets online at http://highpoint.communitiesinschools.org/; click on “Ticket Purchase for High Point Stars.”