“Dancing with Our Stars” for the American Red Cross moving to KI Convention Center in Downtown Green Bay

6th annual event will be held Saturday, February 15th, 2014

Downtown Green Bay is the new destination for the annual “Dancing with Our Stars”event benefiting the American Red Cross of Northeast Wisconsin. The KI Convention Center will host the prestigious fundraiser Saturday, February 15, 2014. The event, now in its sixth year, resembles ABC Television’s hit “Dancing with the Stars” and features ten community members (known as “star dancers”) who compete both on the dance floor and to raise money for the local Red Cross.

“We are excited about partnering with the KI Convention Center and continuing to grow our amazing event,” says Shawn Kiser, Special Events Coordinator for the Red Cross.  “Dancing with Our Stars sells out every year and we look forward to the opportunity to entertain 1,000 guests at the KI.”

“We welcome the Red Cross and DWOS event to downtown with open arms.  Their event will be a unique addition to the growing list of activities taking place throughout the year in the Green Bay’s cultural center.” said Jeff Mirkes, Executive Director, Downtown Green Bay, Inc. & Olde Main Street, Inc.

The 2013 Dancing with Our Stars campaign, headlined by last month’s dancing competition, raised nearly $370,000 in net revenue for the Red Cross. Betina Drivertook home the coveted Mirror Ball Fundraising Trophy. She danced with her husband, former Green Bay Packers wide receiver Donald Driver, and raised $158,000.

Not only do those in attendance support local efforts, so can those not attending as the “star dancers” receive votes in the form of donations to the Red Cross. One dollar equals one vote. All funds raised support 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.

The participants for Dancing with Our Stars 2014 will be announced sometime this fall. To nominate someone, email Shawn Kiser: Shawn.Kiser@redcross.org.

Dancing with our Stars blog: redcrossdwosblog.org

Facebook: facebook.com/NEWRedCross

Twitter: @NEWRedCross (#DWOS to join the conversation!)

About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.

The Man behind the Mirror Ball Winners

Terry Irwin Talks about Instructing Betina & Donald Driver in Ballroom Dancing

IMG_8654 - mirror ball 2

Terry Irwin is like a proud father these days after Betina and Donald Driver drew rave reviews for their performances at the Fifth Annual “Dancing with Our Stars” for the American Red Cross of Northeast Wisconsin. Irwin, owner of TC Dance Club International in Appleton, coached the Drivers and also developed the choreography for their two routines. “Working with the Drivers was truly an amazing experience from a teacher’s point of view,” says Irwin. “Not only are they intelligent and athletic, they have the work ethic and stamina of top professional couples. We would take anywhere from 3 to 8 lessons in a row.  We already knew of Donald’s talents from ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars.” Betina’s raw, untapped abilities truly surprised me,” he said.

Terry teaching Betina and Donald a move for their rumba at his studio in Appleton.

Terry teaching Betina and Donald a move for their rumba at his studio in Appleton.

With 38 years of professional dance experience, including five U.S. Championships, Irwin knows talent when he sees it. “I had many lessons with Betina alone because of Donald’s schedule and would give her things to work on like Latin walks, body rhythms, or foot and ankle articulation, and low & behold, next lesson there would be a dramatic improvement,” he says. “I’ve trained several U.S. champions and the Drivers are right up there with the best I’ve ever trained.”

Betina Driver took home the Mirror Ball Fundraising Trophy for raising more than $155,000. As a dance couple, the Drivers earned the Judges’ Choice Award. Irwin’s time with the Drivers is something he will cherish forever. “Their playful nature and sense of humor made lesson times fly by. As their coach, I was inspired by their compassion, love of family, sense of community, spirituality, and open & caring nature. It was my pleasure and honor to be afforded the opportunity to work with this wonderful couple.”

To learn more about TC Dance Club International, visit their website: http://www.tcdanceclubwi.com

Get to know our Star Dance Partners: Donald Driver

8887Driver, Donald

Photo courtesy of Frievalt Photography, llc

Donald Driver is a Super Bowl Champion, Green Bay’s all-time leading receiver and a “Dancing with the Stars” Champion who overcame homlessness and a challenging childhood to succeed.

Driver is the Packers’ all-time receiving leader in yards and receptions, and is the only player in Packers history to record seven 1,000 yard receiving seasons.  A top performer his entire career, Driver has been a four-time Pro Bowl selection.  In 2010, Donald and the Green Bay Packers defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl XLV giving Donald his first Super Bowl ring.

A native of Houston, Texas, Donald attended college at Alcorn State in Mississippi. While at Alcorn, Donald would meet his future wife, Betina.  Donald and Betina were married in 2000; they have three children together, a son Cristian, and two daughters Christina and Charity.

In 2012, Donald parlayed his on-field football success and charismatic personality into a spot on ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars.” He and his partner, Peta Murgatroyd, danced their way into the finals and eventually took home the Mirror Ball Trophy.

Get to know Betina Driver, Co-host, “The Better Half”

photo courtesy of Frievalt Photography, llc

Betina Driver is co-host of the television program, “The Better Half.”  She’s also a proud mother of Cristian, Christina and Charity and the wife of Green Bay Packers wide receiver Donald Driver.

Betina is active in various charitable efforts across the country, including the Packers Women’s Association, Donald Driver Foundation and Goodwill.

We are excited she’s taking part in Dancing with our Stars 2013 for the American Red Cross. Betina will be performing her dances with her husband. Donald won the mirror ball trophy on the 14th season of ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars.”

Get to know a bit more about Betina:

Describe your first dancing recollection. About how old were you and what was the occasion? I was six-years-old and graduating the Head Start Program when I danced to “Beat It” by Michael Jackson.

Who is your favorite dancer of all time on ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars” and why? The 2012 Champion of “Dancing with the Stars”, my husband, Donald Driver.

Why support the American Red Cross with your participation? The American Red Cross does great things in the community. I believe it’s a great cause to support and I look forward to helping raise funds for the organization.

Get a glimpse of Betina and Donald’s first practice with TC Dance working on their Rumba!