With August approaching, that means it’s the tail end of the summer season and that school will shortly be back in session, but it also means that the Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois’ annual Dancing With Our Stars event is around the corner!
This year’s event will be held on Saturday August 22nd at the Holiday Inn in Mt. Vernon Illinois. This year will be the 7th year Girl Scouts have hosted this dancing competition in which the proceeds donated throughout the night go towards the upcoming year to help with new activities, financial assistance, volunteer training and camp maintenance for the 14,000 girls registered in the southern Illinois region. You can see more about the event at GSSI's website, www.gsofsi.org.
I recently spoke with one of the hosts of this year’s event, Brandon Bullard, who’s the Marketing Director at RARE Chop House located in Mt. Vernon Illinois. I asked him a few questions about the event as well as routines and memories he’s had from past events. Some of his answers were nothing short of hilarious.
NP: How long have you helped with Dancing with our Stars?
BB: “Since day one, I was on the committee when we started, and was a ‘Dancer’ in the first year’s show.”
NP: What’s your favorite memory from this event?
BB: “So many good ones, it’s hard to narrow. I’d say it was a tie between doing my own ‘routine’ the first year, and also just enjoying the total community support getting behind this event and supporting Girl Scouts each and every year.”
NP: Why do you help Girl Scouts with this event?
BB: “They give me a microphone and no script. Dangerous, but a lot of fun.”
NP: Anything new you’d wish to see at this event in the future?
BB: “More acts!! It’s not a professional, choreographed, studio ran event…it is amateurs who love to have fun, dance, enjoy the music, and like to help a great cause. Simply put, come out, have fun, show us your fun side and raise some money for Girl Scouts!”
NP:Do you have a favorite group that performs every year?
BB: “Yes…the judges. They crack me up with every review…I find myself having to catch my breath while the applause is ringing so I can gather myself for the next routine. I love them all! And they never disappoint!”
NP: Do you hope to continue to help the Girl Scouts with this event?
BB: “Every year, no question…yes! My daughter is a Girl Scout and I love the programs and the foundation that she is building…and I am happy to give back.”
NP: f you had to choose a dancing partner from the past events, who would they be and why? What dance would you two do?
BB: “Derrick Quitsch, our City Inspector…he danced with a blow up doll one year and I really felt like I could have taken the doll’s place and guided him to victory. The doll didn’t give him a chance to show his raw theatrical talent and if I could go back, I would help him show the world his true shining star.”
I’m not sure what Bullard will say with his free range power of the microphone or if there will be blow up dolls at this year’s event, but I will say that it’s a wonderful opportunity to show your support for Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois by buying a ticket ($45 which includes dinner and an entertaining night of dancing). There are also table sponsorships available for $500 and include a table for 10 people.
You can also vote for your favorite dancer online and make a small donation that way. Each dollar donated is a “vote” towards the dancer you select. Either way you can support, big or small, it’s a great opportunity to help donate to an organization that helps build girls and gives them wonderful opportunities they wouldn’t find anywhere else.