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Dance Like the Stars raises more than $211,000 for Boys & Girls Clubs

The Boys & Girls Clubs of North Mississippi’s Dance Like the Stars event raised over $211,000 for the youth development organization.

The annual event was held Aug. 22 at the BancorpSouth Arena in Tupelo. Ten local celebrities competed for the titles of Grand Champion and Judges’ Choice. Each celebrity was paired with a dance professional at The Dance Studio of Tupelo to learn and perform a ballroom dance routine.

Carla Stanford of New Albany took home the title of Grand Champion by raising over $36,000. Terry Miller, representing Tupelo, came in second with over $34,000 and Tupelo’s Dr. Nikki Ivancic raised more than $25,000 to take third place. Funds have continued to come in since the close of the event.   

Celebrity judges awarded the first place Judges’ Choice award to Javante’ Ingram of Tupelo. Second place in the Judges’ Choice category went to Ivancic of Tupelo, and Katie Naron of Oxford came in third. Naron raised $15,404.

The 2015 Celebrity Dancers included: Dr. Nikki Ivancic, Javante Ingram, Dr. Aurora Wong, Allie Martin, Terry Miller, Emily Addison and Josh Sullivan representing Tupelo; Katie Naron representing Oxford; Steve Bass representing Ripley; and Dr. Carla Stanford representing New Albany.

A standout performance of the evening was provided by the Boys & Girls Club Ballroom Dance Team. The group is made up of youth who have studied ballroom dance at The Dance Studio and showcase the skills which they have learned on that evening. Also, to celebrate the 10th year of the event, a reunion opening number was performed by dancers from the past nine years.

More than 1,200 guests at the gala event enjoyed dinner and music provided by Dr. Edd Jones and the Little Big Band. An additional 200 attendees came to watch the evening’s performances. Dinner was provided by The Link Centre’ led by Chef David Leathers.

Serving North Mississippi since 1996, the organization reaches more than 2,000 youth annually through clubhouse locations in Tupelo, Oxford, Ripley and New Albany. For more information on Boys and Girls Clubs of North Mississippi, please call 662-841-6504, or visit www. bgcnms.org.