It’s a wrap for Dancing With Vero’s Stars participants

VERO BEACH — The Vero Beach Hotel & Spa made a lovely setting for a Dancing with Vero’s Stars (DVS) wrap party for dancers, committee members and behind the scenes contributors. Dancing with Vero’s Stars 2011, to benefit the Indian River County Healthy Start Coalition, occurred on March 12.

“We’ve always had a wrap party and wanted to do something special, yet keep it within the budget,” said organizer Brenda Lloyd, a 2010 competitor.  “The people at the hotel were wonderful, going above and beyond to put this together.” Dancing with Vero’s Stars was co-chaired this year by Joe Robinson, who indicated he has volunteered to do so again, and Rebecca Emmons, 2010 Grand Prize Winner.  Robinson hopes to continue the tradition of having dancers join the committee.

“It gives them a chance to participate on the other side,” said Robinson.  “Anything they didn’t like about this one, they’ll have a chance to fix.”

As an example, an improvement this year was to have cocktail and intermission receptions held in Saint Edward’s spacious Wachter Activity Center.

“Crystal’s decorations were beautiful,” said dancer Susan Clay, referencing A Piece of Cake event planner Crystal Stepanek.

Stepanek had enlisted the help of Josh Dugan to drape the room and walkways leading to the Waxlax Auditorium with fabulous canopies of lights.

“You develop a bond with the other stars while you’re doing this; you have a common goal,” said Lloyd.

“I want to dance forever,” admitted Clay, who agreed to join the 2012 committee.

Bobby Guttridge, and his professional dance partner Karren Walter, were the proud recipients of the 2011 Grand Prize Trophy.

When asked if she would compete in 2012, his wife Laura replied with a wink, “There are rumors that I am.”

The top fundraiser for 2011 was Judy Van Saun, amassing a whopping $23,566 and breaking all previous records.

“I nickel and dimed it,” said Van Saun, acknowledging the help she received from husband Bob as well.  “Bob worked so hard; you have to have teamwork.”

During a brief presentation, Robinson recognized her remarkable contribution and those of the other top fundraisers, Jarrod Owen and Bobby Guttridge.

This was the first time there had been a three-way tie in the judge’s scores for best dancer, and Robinson awarded plaques to the teams of Bobby Guttridge and Karren Walter, Susan Clay and Joe Wynes, and Patrick Toole and Shari Tessier.

“You’re the ones who made the event a success; I thank you from the bottom of my heart,” said Robinson, thanking participants and committee members for all their contributions. {igallery 385}

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