Last updated: November 09. 2013 10:12PM - 4208 Views
By - rottney@civitasmedia.com - 740-353-3101



Submitted photoPhoto of the Star Dancers for 2014. Front (left to right): Taralyn Bernard, Nicholas Fite. Middle: Dr. Jesse Houghton, Francesca Hartop, Cheryl Mershon, Regina Chabot. Turman Helton, Julie Blackburn. Back row: Gerald Cadogan and Jonathan Eaton.
Submitted photoPhoto of the Star Dancers for 2014. Front (left to right): Taralyn Bernard, Nicholas Fite. Middle: Dr. Jesse Houghton, Francesca Hartop, Cheryl Mershon, Regina Chabot. Turman Helton, Julie Blackburn. Back row: Gerald Cadogan and Jonathan Eaton.
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Ryan Scott Ottney


PDT Staff Writer


The Ohio River Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross announced its 2014 “Dancing with our Stars” line-up Friday evening, during a special kick-off celebration at the Elks City Club in Portsmouth.


The upcoming dance competition — scheduled for April 5, 2014, at the Southern Ohio Medical Center’s Friends Community Center — pairs 10 local business owners and “community personalities” with semi-professional dancers to compete for the coveted 2014 Dancing With Our Stars Mirror Ball Fundraising Trophy. The winner will be selected by the voting public with votes in the form of dollars donated in support of the star.


One dollar equals one vote. All funds raised support local disaster prevention, preparation and relief, the life-saving training of first aid, CPR/AED classes, collection and testing of blood and blood products, support to military members serving around the globe, the transportation program, and international programs.


Donations can be made now online at www.crowdrise.com/2014OhioRiverValleyDWOS.


Stars will also be holding individual fundraising events and activities during the next few months to support the local Red Cross and secure additional votes as every dollar they raise in their name is a vote towards the Mirror Ball Trophy.


The 2014 star dancer line-up will include:


TARALYN BERNARD

  • Bernard is the owner of Pediatric Therapy Services, in Memphis, Tenn. She was ecstatic when she found out that she would be part of a fun event because she loves entertaining and giving back to the community. Her motto - “Just do it.” Bernard will be dancing with Michael Stapleton.


JULIE BLACKBURN

  • Co-owner of ‘83 Sweets Gourmet Cupcakes, Blackburn was a winner of “Cupcakes Wars” on the Food Network, and she is not afraid of a stage. Let’s see if she’ll put on her gloves and be ready for battle for the coveted Mirror Ball Trophy. Blackburn will be dancing with Michael Stapleton.


GERALD CADOGAN

  • Our local football star, Cardogan has decided to trade in his cleats and pickup his dancing shoes for Dancing With Our Stars. He has been quoted in saying that “Take advantage of every opportunity to help someone else, because that someone in need one day could be you.” Cadogan will be dancing with Wendi Waugh.


REGINA CHABOT

  • A Portsmouth native, Regina “Gina” Chabot is a Designer/Project Manager with TSHD Architects. She feels her little girl dreams have come true as she can dance in a way that benefits people in need. Chabot will be dancing with Elonzo Watt.


JONATHAN EATON

  • Vice President of Sales at Hadsell Chemical Processing/Relevant Compounding in Waverly, Eaton has an extensive background in freestyle dancing as a youth at Tan-Lan dances. Let’s see if those years of experience pay off. Eaton will be dancing with Dianne Coriell.


NICHOLAS FITE

  • Fite is the owner and stylist at Vanity Hair Company on Market Street in the Bonneyfiddle area. He has a passion for dancing and looks forward to learning new dance styles and techniques. Fite will be dancing with Heather Cate.


FRANCESCA HARTOP

  • The CEO and co-founder of YEI Corporation, Hartop has been sited dancing in the aisles of local grocery stores. This experience should have her prepared for an outstanding performance in April. Hartop will be dancing with Steve Doster.


TURMAN HELTON

  • Helton hails from Beaver, and is a retired data acquisition specialist from G.E. Aircraft Engines. Although he has no music or dance background, he loves to dance; and do wild and crazy things; especially if it’s for a good cause. Helton will be dancing with Sonya Swain.


JESSE HOUGHTON, MD

  • Houghton is the Medical Director of Gastroenterology at Southern Ohio Medical Center. His only musical/dance background is break dancing in elementary school, but he’s ready to strut his stuff for the American Red Cross. Houghton will be dancing with Autumn Thompson.


CHERYL MERSHON

  • The co-owner of Noggins Pub in Portsmouth, Mershon is a former showgirl from the Red Stockings Revues held in the ’80s. Some people think of her as Portsmouth’s own Jane Fonda. Mershon will be dancing with Ladd Dunham.


These 10 celebrity dancers will spend the next four months with a semi-professional ballroom dancer learning a dance which they will perform at Dancing With Our Stars 2014 sponsored by Southern Ohio Medical Center. The person raising the most money will be awarded the coveted Mirror Ball Trophy.


The first season of Dancing with Our Stars was presented to a sell-out crowd and generated more than $43,000 to support the local Red Cross programs in the community.


The Ohio River Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross “Dancing with our Stars” will be April 5, 2014, at the SOMC Friends Center in Portsmouth. Doors open at 6 p.m. for social hour with a cash bar, followed by dinner at 6:30 p.m. and the show beginning at 8 p.m. Sponsorships are currently being secured and interested sponsored can contact Vicky Hatcher at 740-352-6165 or vhatcher@roadrunner.com.


General ticket sales will be announced at a later date. Seating is limited and is by reservation only. All proceeds benefit the local programs of the Ohio River Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross for disaster services in Pike and Scioto Counties.


For more information, follow the event on Facebook or visit the ORVC Red Cross website at www.redcross.org/oh/portsmouth. The Dancing with our Stars Blog is also available online at orvdwos.weebly.com.


Ryan Scott Ottney may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 287, or rottney@civitasmedia.com. For breaking news, follow Ryan on Twitter @PDTwriter.


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