Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 2, 2001


Riverside, St. Charles Catholic team up Given a certain set of circumstances, just about anything can happen as with the Riverside and St. Charles Catholic dance teams. Normally typical, competitive high schools, the girls, parents and friends, were of one mind at the recent National All-Star High School Dance competition. Sure, they were competing, but not against each other, especially when the finals came. My nieces, Lacey Himel, who is a Riverside Southern Sweetheart, and her mom, Christy, were going, so Aunt Anna tagged along since they had an extra seat on the plane. Dancers, moms, dads, grandmothers, grandfathers, aunts, uncles and friends gathered at the airport early that Friday morning at the end of March, ready to go to Orlando for the annual National All-Star High School Dance competition. Riverside left first and St. Charles followed shortly thereafter but we all stayed at the very new and very beautiful Hard Rock Hotel, right on the grounds of Universal Studios. It was so much fun for all of us as we turned ourselves loose all over the place at first chance. The area, City Lights, right outside of Universal, has plenty places to shop, sight-see and eat, and you can take the boat taxi there from the hotel; or walk if you feel ambitious. I learned right away, though, that teen-age girls, for the most part, haven’t changed. They are still a delight to be around, especially when they are simply acting like themselves! Of course I knew this because of the 10 years I spent with the Lutcher Fellowship of Christian Athlete girls. I love being around teen-agers; they are highly refreshing and accepting, I believe. My first few hours, and much of my time there, was spent with Tiffany Lear, Jenna Millet and Sandy Fortenberry and sometimes Lindsay Melancon. I got through it dry even though Tiffany thought I needed a cool-down among the water spouts. I escaped that one but a ride on the big roller coaster and then on a spinning thing just about finished me off. Tiffany and Jenna, for sure, went on the roller coaster about four times straight. Ah, youth!! Riverside and St. Charles Catholic fans joined forces in rooting for our home teams who did very well in the dance competition. Willene Hobdy sponsors the Riverside team and Melissa Boudreaux does the same for St. Charles. Other supporters of Riverside included Hannah Hobdy, Tressie Montz, Dawn Cauble, Ashley Roussel, Jimmie and Cathy Montz, Melisssa Melancon, Barbara Meaux and Dawn Fortenberry. I already told you Christy and I went and so did Toni and Glenn Miano, Nicole Tymon, Sarah Hobdy, Lilli Millet, Kathleen Weber, Julie and Laurie Roussel and Tony Kersh. Both schools made the finals which took place on Sunday with Riverside in the “pom” competition and St. Charles Catholic Star Steppers in the “high kick” in which that school has always done very well. To get to the finals is indeed a huge challenge with so many schools being represented, so us locals were really excited and all dancers there were already winners. They had overcome plenty other competition at local and state levels to reach the nationals and that was truly an honor. Riverside’s Southern Sweethearts included captain Lindsey Tamplain and co-captain Ruth Hobdy, Kassi Montz, Hallie Roussel, Angelle Tymon, Lindsay Melancon, Jenna Millet, Tiffany Lear, Sadie Montz, Lacey Himel and Sandy Fortenberry. Representing St. Charles Catholic Star Steppers were captain, Codi Trepagnier, co-captain Rene Robichaux, Kaley Landry, Kelly Brignac, Melissa Heltz, Brooke Lemoine and Nicole Mathews. Other excellent high kickers were Ashley Rodrigue, Cheryl Teate, Amanda Walters, Jessica Barcelona, Aimee Chauvin, Christina Hanes, Amy Satterlee, Lacie Tamplain, Lindsay Trepagnier and Ashley Garcich. They were a large group and did they look terrific! St. Charles Catholic didn’t place in the finals, but it had to be close because even though they were ours, we thought they nailed their routine. Riverside was very pleased with its third place in the finals. That is really hard to do, but they did it. If cheering had made the difference, with the two teams rooting for each other, they would have both won because St. Charles Catholic fans even had their own pom poms. In that number was Dean Mannina who is athletic trainer and Morgan Zeringue, manager. They also had Neil Boudreaux, Colin and Lana Trepagnier, Lynn Robichaux, Riley Bourg, Heidi Landry, Sandy Landry, Pamela Cambre, Wayne and Phyllis Robichaux, Steve, Stephanie and Casey Brignac, Cameron and Lance Heltz, Donna Lemoine, Michelle, Kevin and Chase Mathews, Melinda and Alyssa Rodrigue. Adding to an enthusiastic group that performed their own dance steps while waiting for the competition to begin were Linda Teate, Marsha Walters, Sheila Chauvin, Rose Marie Weaks, Tammy and Bill Hanes, Kathy Lonidier, Sandra Tamplain, Burt and Mathew Walters, Liz Garcich, Cynthia and Chuck Breaux and Melissa Raspino. We were a dancing bunch! We were delighted with the performances. There is so much more to say but I believe I am out of space. We got to visit both parks at Universal (needless to say I avoided going back to the rides), take pictures and enjoy the company of each other. While the Riverside crowd spent its last day at Universal, St. Charles Catholic spent it at Magic Kingdom. When Monday evening arrived, we still could fill two planes and for most of us, gladly, because what we got the least of was n you guessed it n sleep! Adults and dancers had a really fun time. It won’t be long before we will be going back! ANNA MONICA, a resident of Garyville, writes this column every Wednesday for L’Observateur.