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What's Up Magazine

Horizons Dance with the Stars

Jan 11, 2012 08:48PM ● By Anonymous

CHESTERTOWN, MD—The fourth annual Horizons Dance with the Stars fundraiser takes over the gymnasium of the Kent County Community Center in Worton Saturday evening, January 21, as nine Stars and their dance-pro partners compete for donations to Horizons at Radcliffe Creek School, a summer enrichment program for low-income public school children in Kent County.

This year’s Star and Pro pairings include physicians, educators, and business owners. They include: Dr. John Arrabal dancing with dance-school owner Jennifer Tosten; attorney Charlie Athey with Church Hill Elementary School teacher Amanda Ensor; physical therapist Julia Bainbridge, owner of Chestertown Physical Therapy, with Sudlersville Middle School teacher Darryl Calloway; Radcliffe Creek School teacher Catherine Bushby with airline pilot Keith Ensor; and Torr Howell, owner of Blue Heron Contracting , with Cherae Ensor, the Zumba instructor who first introduced the dance/exercise classes to the area.

Brennan Starkey, president of Starkey Farms, is paired with Queen Anne’s County special educator Lucia Calloway, and Dr. Lisa Webb will dance with martial arts instructor Mark Pagano. Rounding out the competition are funeral director Kirk Helfenbein, partnered with Washington College admission officer Aundra Weissert, and the principal of Kent County High School, Tracey Williams, who will dance with hospital ER nurse and administrator John Haines.

Actors Jim Landskroener and Melissa McGlynn, both teachers at Kent School, will again serve as co-hosts. Returning as judges are Chestertown’s mayor Margo Bailey, Mainstay director Tom McHugh, dentist Neil Brayton and dance expert Karen Lynn Smith, chair of the Dance Department at Washington College.

The event gets underway at 6 p.m. with a cocktail buffet. The show is slated to begin at 7 p.m. After all of the couples have performed, the dollar votes cast in their names will be tallied and the top two or tree will return to the dance floor for the finals. During voting breaks and after the competition, the dance floor will be open.

In addition to proceeds from ticket sales ($125 for a reserved seat at a table, $65 for general admission with some limited bleacher seating) the Horizons program benefits from the cash votes cast for the dancers. The votes can be cast in advance three ways: online at, by mail at Horizons at RCS, 201 Talbot Blvd., Chestertown, MD 21620, or by giving the cash or check donations (checks made out to Horizons at RCS) directly to the dancers to bring with them to the competition.

The colorful décor for this year’s event will reflect a Bollywood theme, with plenty of color and shimmer. (Bollywood refers to the Indian movie industry, which is centered in Bombay). In keeping with that theme, inexpensive versions of several traditional Indian adornments -- bindi dots, henna tattoos and bangles—will be available for purchase at the event.

Tables for eight have sold out. The deadline to reserve a seat at a cocktail table for four ($500 for the table; $125 for a single seat) is January 12. General Admission tickets are available through Monday, January 16. To reserve, visit For questions, please email or call the Horizons office at 410-778-9903.

The Horizons program in Kent County was founded at Kent School in 1995 and moved to Radcliffe Creek School three years ago. The program serves some 70 low-income children each year, offering them targeted instruction in reading and math, science projects, swim lessons and activities that build citizenship and community. The Dance with the Stars event is a major source of funding for teacher salaries, supplies and other costs.