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4-18 Dancing with stars

Mark Staunton, a past winner of the Dancing With Your Stars of Klamath Falls competition, raises a trophy in triumph in the annual dancing competition for charity slated to return to the Ross Ragland Theater on Friday, April 26.

Back by popular demand, the annual Dancing With Your Stars of Klamath Falls competition returns to the Ross Ragland Theater stage to help a local charity.

The event, which last year was pledged to be the final such contest and featured returning champions, returns once again welcoming local public figures across the Klamath Basin to strut their stuff for a charity of their choice. Held at 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 26, a total of six competitors, with the aid of the Utah Ballroom Dance Company, will figuratively battle it out until one champion emerges based on judges’ scores and popular vote.

Competing this year, and their respective chosen charities to support, are Alex Stork, Special Olympics; Dr. John Goodell, Project Spirit; Scott Souders, CASA; Kelsey Mueller, Blue Zones Project; Taylor Tupper, YMCA; and Mika Blain, Friends of the Children.

At stake, as in past years, is a $500 donation to the chosen charity. The crowd plays a large part too, as each audience member may vote for their favorite dancer (or charity) at $1 minimum per vote, with proceeds from the vote tally also benefiting the selected charity. Votes can be submitted by texting 541-204-2201 with the amount to donate and name of contestant.

As in previous editions, and following the format popularized by the television show on which the contest is based, each competing dancer isn’t simply thrown on stage and expected to perform without any preparation. For the past week leading up to the big day each has been working with professional dancers from the Utah Ballroom Dance Company to prepare and hone their dance skills.

While in the past, the Utah Ballroom Dance Company has also performed while final votes are tallied, this year local youth dancers (ages 10-14) get to grace the stage to entertain, performing a number taught by the Utah dance troupe to open the show. Past alumni of the event will also perform.

Students are being sought to participate in the age 10 to 14 dance performance – the first 25 to join will be in the performance. Participation requires students to attend rehearsals each day starting at 4 p.m. April 22. Interested students should contact Sam Burris at 541-884-0651 ext. 113 or email education@rrtheater.org.

Tickets for the event are $23, $27 or $32, before transaction fees. For more information or to reserve seats call 541-884-5483 or visit www.rrtheater.org.

email kliedtke@heraldandnews.com @kliedtkeHN

Staff reporter for the Herald and News.