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Dancing with the Tri-State Stars raises $25K

Nov. 11, 2012 @ 12:23 AM

HUNTINGTON -- The performance for John Collins and Bette Vickers wasn't the first foxtrot around the dance floor for the dancing veterans, but it was one of the more significant dances for the duo, earning them a winning trophy Saturday night during the Fourth Annual Dancing with the Tri-State Stars event at the Big Sandy Superstore Arena.

The event benefiting Ebenezer Medical Outreach drew the likes of Collins and Vickers along with 12 other couples, who twirled, shimmied and dipped all evening long for a good cause.

The event raises about $25,000 annually for Ebenezer, which provides health screenings to people who cannot afford health insurance or are underinsured.

Inspiration is as much of a goal as fundraising during the event, said Yvonne Jones, executive director of EMO.

"We want people, in the crowd and dancing, to have a good time first and foremost," Jones said. "We hope by seeing these people dancing, moving around and having fun all while getting exercise that people are inspired to be healthy themselves. Not to mention the local celebrities who completely make this event with their presence, their efforts in dancing are going to help us make a difference in this community."

Preparation for the event definitely made a difference for celebrity dancer Izzy Cross, a culinary chef at Mountwest Community and Technical College and owner of 21 at the Frederick.

"It really had been a great time, and we danced fabulously," Cross said. "It's a good competition, and I am competitive. I think we did our best, and it was good because it was for a community cause."

Joining Collins, Vickers and Cross on the dance floor were Brian Sipe, general manager of the Big Sandy Superstore Arena; Jill Francisco of Huddleston Bolen LLP; Alissa Stewart of Southwestern Community Action Council; Joe Murphy of Trifecta Productions; Ed Tucker of Edward Tucker Architects; Lynn Tucker of the Cabell County Board of Education; Tammy White of Farrell, White & Legg PLLC; Mary and Tommy Smirl of Tri-Data Inc.; Mic Nichols of Lee David Salon; Roz Bradshaw, owner of Monty's Original Pizza in Barboursville; and George Snider of Murder and Merriment acting troupe.

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