Dancing in the Clover 2014

This weekend is the 2014 Dancing in the Clover dance competition, an annual fundraising event for the Union County 4H Foundation.  This is our fourth year of participation and the fifth year of the competition.  For those of you who are unfamiliar with the event, local “Stars” are paired up with professional partners and are asked to put together a 2 1/2 minute dance routine.  Dance styles can range from Ballroom, Latin, Club, International and even sometimes modern will come into the mix.  The object of the fundraiser is for the stars to raise money, which equals votes.  The star with the most votes at the end of the evening will win the competition.

Denise and Ryan

This year my partner is Denise Milliken, a Real Estate agent with Allen Tate.  She has been a real joy to work with over the last two months.  We have put in an average of about 3 hours a week since January and she has been a real trouper.  She has even worked through some minor muscle pulls and obvious aches and pains due to the physical nature of the routine.

Denise has performed in local theater productions and is a gifted public speaker.  Even though she has experience in these disciplines, she has never danced in front of people and the experience can be a little overwhelming.  I learned a few years ago that it is always a good idea to have several mock rehearsals to help get the jitters out before the actual day.  Last Friday, we put on a special performance for my students at one of our Dance Socials.  We ended up being a little fast in our timing, but I actually expected that.  For those who make a profession of presenting to large groups, you know that there are certain things that happen the first several times you make a presentation in front of people.  There are two things that general happen – either you are scared to death and have trouble speaking or you have a surge of adrenaline and you talk to fast.   Ours was the surge of adrenaline and so we were well ahead of the music at certain points.  That is OK, because it is better to have that experience now, than on the real competition day.

Our last official practice was this evening and we worked on a few of the rough spots for a final tweak before the full dress rehearsal on Saturday. Denise feels ready to go.  We are looking forward to putting our routine out there for people to enjoy and more importantly, for us to enjoy as well.

Now comes a shameless plug:  Please take a moment to “vote” on our behalf.  The link below will take you straight to our voting page.


The video of our performance will not be ready for a number of weeks, but I will post an interview with Denise very soon.  I think you will find her experience to be entertaining to read.  Until then, please enjoy a video of my performance with Emily Krouskop from our 2013 Butterfly House competition in September.


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