Celebrity dancers com­pete on and off the dance floor

Sun Sentinel Broward Edition - Society Scene - Broward - - Front Page -

Re­hears­ing their dance lifts, spins and at­ti­tude, five Broward busi­ness and com­mu­nity lead­ers are pre­par­ing to face off as The Pantry of Broward and the Semi­nole Hard Rock Ho­tel& Casino present the fifth an­nual “Danc­ing with the Stars of Broward” May 4 in Hol­ly­wood.

The pre­mier fundrais­ing event for the pantry will help pro­vide food and other sup­port ser­vices to se­niors on low, fixed in­comes and grand­par­ents rais­ing their grand­chil­dren.

Mod­eled af­ter the pop­u­lar na­tional TVshow, “Danc­ing with the Stars of Broward,” the event will pair each lo­cal celebrity with a pro­fes­sional dance in­struc­tor. Dur­ing­weeks of tough train­ing, they’re pre­par­ing to take the stage at the Semi­nole Hard Rock Ho­tel & Casino to per­form two dance rou­tines for an au­di­ence of 400 guests. For the event’s fifth an­niver­sary, the celebrity com­peti­tors have al­ready upped the ante: The pair that wins the cham­pion’s tro­phy must daz­zle the judges and au­di­ence - and have a strong show­ing in rais­ing funds for the event. So as they per­fect their dance­moves, the celebs are ral­ly­ing friends and fam­ily to vote for their teams by mak­ing on­line do­na­tions to the char­ity.

This year’s celebrity com­peti­tors are: Chef Lee Blak­ley ofWines for Hu­man­ity; Alyssa Lovitt of Tim­pano Ital­ian Chop­house; John Mabry of Au­toNa­tion; Luke Moor­man of Car­roll’s Jewel­ers; andKathy O’Brien of Fort Laud­erdale Coun­try Club.

Tick­ets, priced at $200 per per­son, are lim­ited. In­ter­ested guests are en­cour­aged to re­serve seats early by call­ing Ter­rence Smal­ley at 954-358-1481, ext. 113 or or­der­ing on­line at www.thep­antry­of­broward.org.

This year’s co-chairs are Gale But­ler ofAu­toNa­tion and Jen Klaassens of TheWasie Foun­da­tion, whowas a 2011 “Danc­ing with the Stars of Broward” con­tes­tant and a judge in 2012.

“Guests know‘Danc­ing with the Stars of Broward’ de­liv­ers a high-en­ergy evening for a great cause,” said Klaassens. “To cel­e­brate the event’s fifth an­niver­sary, our team is tak­ing cos­tumes, pro­duc­tion ef­fects and fun to the next level.”

Judges will be Pem­broke Pines Mayor Frank Or­tis and 2012 “Danc­ing with the Stars of Broward” celebrity dancers Lau­rina An­der­son, Marc Can­non, John­nyWil­liams and Ka­tri­naWright, who will of­fer com­men­tary on the per­for­mances.

Au­di­ence mem­bers can also pur­chase votes be­fore and dur­ing the event for $1each.

“As The Pantry’s ma­jor an­nual fundraiser, ‘Danc­ing with the Stars of Broward’ is vi­tal to our mis­sion of help­ing se­niors in need in Broward County,” said Penny Loughan, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of The Pantry of Broward. “This year, through so­cial me­dia, all the con­tes­tants’ friends can sup­port their team and be in on the fun.”

In ad­di­tion to pre­sent­ing spon­sor Semi­nole Hard Rock Ho­tel& Casino, spon­sors in­clude Publix, Au­toNa­tion, TheWasie Foun­da­tion, Pernod Ri­cardUSA, Wines For Hu­man­ity, BB&T, Bi­mini Boat Yard, Car­roll’s Jewel­ers, FastPrintzOak­land Park, Fort Laud­erdale Coun­try Club, Miller Con­struc­tion Com­pany, Postal Cen­ters In­ter­na­tional, Quinn Pro Quo, Smith& Knibbs Pub­lic Re­la­tions, SBBS, Spec­tor LawOf­fices and Tim­pano Ital­ian Chop­house.

The Pantry of Broward, a non­profit or­ga­ni­za­tion, pro­vides food and other sup­port ser­vices to more than 425 clients and166 grand­chil­dren through­out Broward County. Founded in 2008, The Pantry of Broward agency is a nu­tri­tional safety net for lo­cal se­niors in need, many who are rais­ing their grand­chil­dren.

Kevin Friel, left, Luke Moor­man, Chelsea Roth and Steve Adel­stein

Doug Jones, left, Re­nee Quinn and JohnMabry

Johnny Wil­liams, left, Manya Lowry, Alyssa Lovitt, Bryant Wil­liams, Michael O’Brien and Kathy O’Brien

Gale But­ler, left, Ter­rence Smal­ley and Jen Klaassens

Lau­rina An­der­son, left, Thom Blak­ley, Lee Blak­ley, Vance Valsek and Mar­garethe Sorensen

Bob Spec­tor, left, EJ Spec­tor and Bob D’An­gelo

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