Front row: Madison Moon, Victoria Farish, Mallori Padgett, Kaylee Veazey, Kaelee Connell, Melissa Hyde, Alyssa Gardner Middle row: Kaylynn Hope, Hannah Patterson, Gracie Hockman, Alex Cuellar, Kinzie McDonald, Mandy Simpson, Sarah Coy Back Row: Kayla Woods, Jessie Behrle, Hannah Wallace, AnnMarie Yednak, Gracie Driskell, Amber Neilsen, Marie Chamberlain, Tessa Otter.
Front: Madison Moon, Victoria Farish, Mallori Padgett, Kaylee Veazey, Kaelee Connell, Melissa Hyde and Alyssa Gardner.
Middle: Kaylynn Hope, Hannah Patterson, Gracie Hockman, Alex Cuellar, Kinzie McDonald, Mandy Simpson and Sarah Coy. Back: Kayla Woods, Jessie Behrle, Hannah Wallace, AnnMarie Yednak, Gracie Driskell, Amber Neilsen, Marie Chamberlain and Tessa Otter.

Archived Story

Dream Makers voted best dance team at diabetes fundraiser

Published 10:14am Friday, December 13, 2013

By STEPHANIE BRUMFIELD / Staff Writer

COLUMBIANA – The Dream Makers Studio Dance Team of Columbiana, which consists of preschool to college age dancers all across the county, won first place at the third annual Dance Away Diabetes fundraiser at the Riverchase Galleria Nov. 10.

Of the more than $5,000 that was raised during the competition, the Dream Makers team raised $750, the most of any group.

The Dance Away Diabetes fundraiser is held annually to raise awareness and funds for the American Diabetes Association. More than 120 teenagers from area dance teams participated in this year’s event, according to a press release.

Jenny Lespi, director of Dream Makers, said parents, shoppers and other audience members voted for their favorite teams by making monetary donations in each team’s jar. Lespi said she was glad her team got to compete while also doing something for somebody else.

“There were a lot of good dancers there,” Lespi said. “I’m glad they entertained the crowd.”

Lespi also said she was proud of her dancers for “making it to the top” despite the fact that their studio is located in a school gym and lacks the mirrors and bars that many other studios have.

“Having mirrors and bars doesn’t necessarily make a good dancer,” Lespi said. “Having passion and commitment makes a good dancer.”

Dream Makers dance classes are offered through the Shelby County Board of Education’s community education program. Students in all Shelby County schools are eligible to participate, and more than 100 students currently take classes at four schools.

Lespi said the program offers convenience and affordability, giving students who can’t afford to join a bigger dance studio the opportunity to take dance classes at school.

“We’re where passion meets opportunity,” Lespi said. “We give them opportunity to perform.”

For more information about Dream Makers, contact Jenny Lespi at Jlespi@shelbyed.k12.al.us.

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