Union City Chamber bringing dancing competition back


UNION CITY, Ind. — Union City Chamber of Commerce will be presenting “Dancing With the Stars,” with a tribute to veterans, once again at 7 p.m. Oct. 22.

This year, the third annual event will be held in the Union City Community High School (UCCHS) Cafetorium. For the past two years, it was held at Mississinawa Valley School.

“The location was changed this year when the UCCHS principal, who serves on our Chamber board, asked why not have it at UCCHS,” said Jan Aukerman, who is spearheading the program once again.

Aukerman said it was Chamber President Susie Norton who asked him to do another one of these shows.

“She loved both of the ones before,” said Aukerman, who himself is a member of the Chamber. “And, I wanted to support her.”

Coming to perform at this year’s show include the dances teams at Mississinawa Valley and UCCHS; Erroll Threewits of Union City, who dances at pro-am competitions; Rebecca Tiree of Richmond, Indiana; Don and Suzette Johnson of Troy; Ronnie and Cindy Mullens of Tipp City; and Aukerman and his partner, Becky Dirksen.

“Ron and Cindy and Becky and I have six world titles between us,” Aukerman said.

He noted that there will be something new this year, where non-dancers will dance with the “celebrity” dancers just like in “Dancing With the Stars” on television.

“Celebrity” dancers will be Jennifer (Scott) Bissell, possibly Dennis and Pam Pratt; and Aukerman himself.

Another feature will see Aukerman dancing with his granddaughter, Alexis Stump. They also danced at the recent State Line Heritage Days.

“We are going to have a special tribute and the beginning and end. There will be a dance featuring Edith and Archie Bunker routine with me and Becky and there will be a dance skit called Bad Dog,” he said.

He said their coaches will not be able to make it to the show this year, but indicated there was going to be a basket full of gift certificates and such to be raffled off.

An additional highlight and real reason for the show will be the veterans, and Aukerman said he is seeking photographs of any veterans in the Union City area or beyond.

“We are looking for pictures of veterans from all the wars,” he said. “Send them to me at Aukerman’s Tire and Service at 321 Orange St, or by calling me at 968-5911, or the Chamber office.”

What gave Aukerman the idea of honoring veterans in the first place?

“UCWDC [United Country Western Dance Council] is worldwide,” Aukerman said. “It has a competition once a year in 20 countries. One year at the world, it was the year of the big earthquake in Japan, they couldn’t believe the support the U.S. dancers gave to them. They talked about how thankful they were for what we did. My dad fought in World War II. I thought how something as simple as dancing can bring things together, like friendships. Dancing brings countries together and UCWDC brings different cultures together.”

Tickets are available from any Chamber member or at the Chamber office, located at 277 W. Oak St., Union City, Indiana, by calling 765-964-5409 or at [email protected]

Journey Home in Winchester, Indiana, will be getting half of the proceeds from the dance.

Tribute to veterans slated for new venue

By Linda Moody

[email protected]

This writer may be reached at 937-569-4315. Follow her on Facebook and join the conversation and get updates on Facebook by searching Darke County Sports or Advocate 360. For more features online go to dailyadvocate.com.

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