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Wednesday, February 28, 2024
Feb. 28, 2024

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Dancing with Local Stars is March 4 at ilani

Annual event benefits variety of nonprofit organizations

By , Columbian Managing Editor for Content

Jesse Braman said his wife, Amanda, volunteered him to dance in front of hundreds of people as part of Rotary Club of Three Creeks’ big annual fundraiser.

“I’m more of an introvert. Dancing on stage — or doing anything in front of people — is not something I’ve ever done,” said Braman, who owns Pivotal Painting with his wife. “Then I decided, ‘You know what? I’m going to step out of my comfort zone.’ ”

He and eight other volunteers, each paired with instructors, will take the stage at ilani near Ridgefield on March 4 for Dancing with the Local Stars.

Rotary Club of Three Creeks took over the annual competition from the Historic Trust in 2018. The event raises money for nonprofit organizations that assist children, veterans and homeless in Clark County.

If You Go

What: Dancing with the Local Stars presented by Parlour 73.

When: 5:30 p.m. March 4.

Where: ilani, 1 Cowlitz Drive, Ridgefield.

Tickets: $100 each or a table of 10 for $1,000 at www.dancingwiththelocalstars.com.

This year’s event, originally set for 300 guests, sold out in less than a month, according to Nelson Holmberg of the Rotary Club. So organizers added six more tables and may consider adding even more if ticket sales remain brisk.

In addition to Braman, the 2023 cast of Dancing with the Local Stars includes:

  • Natalie Grushevskiy-Rybak of Aerista Aviation;
  • Marykay Lamoureaux of the Ridgefield Main Street Association;
  • Shana O’Brien of Cascadia NW Real Estate;
  • Brad Richardson of the Clark County Historical Museum;
  • Angie White-Swanson, a teacher for Evergreen Public Schools;
  • Mitchell Wilder of Frito Lay;
  • Dr. Weiya Wysham of Compass Oncology; and
  • Paul Van Der Salm of Heritage Bank.

The volunteers have been training with dance instructors for the event. Braman has been practicing weekly with Dani Synarski of Beaverton, Ore., who will be his dance partner.

“Every single person has the ability to dance,” Synarski said. “I firmly believe that 100 percent.”