Ok - this article is a bit late in coming. That is primarily because I broke the back end of this site (a whole other story). So, without further adieu, Michigan Dancesport!!!
The competition was held in Dearborne, MI, at the Marriot Henry Hotel, the last weekend in March. Overall, a nice venue, however, one of the more less-than-positive notes was how much the venue itself tended to feel somewhat "nickle and dime-y" while staying there. Breakfasts and lunches really needed to be purchased at the hotel and that turned out pretty pricey over a 4 day stay. ($30 per person for a buffet style breakfast with the usual items? Really?) Otherwise, the venue was fine.
To begin, this was a tough competition. Tougher than I have seen in some time. And huge!! I came in with about 204 entries, but several teachers there showed up with over 300, and one lady in particular broke a record with over 500 entries!! Wow!
The first event was Nightclub dances and championships (Salsa, Hustle, West Coast Swing, Argentine Tango, American Samba and Merengue). I had 3 lovely ladies dancing in those events. Two of them, Deb and Carmen, did their usual brilliant work. Debbie came out of this a Nightclub dance champion (placing 3rd in what was one of the largest Nightclub dance events that we have seen ever), and Carmen placed 1st across the boards in her entries. This was Gail's 1st competition with me, and definitely the first time she has been up against such a huge floor (in all, there was likely over 7000 dance entries at this event). Gail did extremely well in her time out there and placed in the top 3 routinely. You should have seen the crazy when the championships went on. We were encouraged to set aside many rules (category and tricks) and just go to town. Deb learned I can easily pick her up off the floor real fast.
The next day, we had American Smooth. Can you believe this started at 7AM?!? Poor Gail and I were up and dancing at 7AM in the frickin' morning!!! Well, obviously this didn't affect Gail too much as she placed routinely 1st and 2nd in her dances. Brilliant for her first time out! Deb and Carmen and I had a bit more difficult time in our runs. We regularly had heats of over 12 couples and lots going on. We didn't do as strongly as we would have liked - but we learned quite a bit of how we need to proceed. Still, we placed well enough that it would impact us positively later.
American Rhythm came next. Gail danced again, and placed in the top 4 generally in those dances (Cha Cha, Rumba, Mambo, Bolero, and East Coast Swing). Carmen and Deb again were up against the toughest girls the surrounding 6 states and country (Canadian's showed up too) and I think they did remarkably well. The same for their Latin and Standard dances on the remaining days.
In all, out of about 123 or so teachers, because of the girls hard work, I placed 7th Top Teacher!!! To me, this was a huge deal, particularly at this comp.
Sorry, no videos of this one, but pictures!!! This link should take your right to them...
And this link to some professional photography of us at the event...