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Dancing With the Stars-Victoria style: Doing the Cha-Cha for some Cha-Ching

By APRILL BRANDON
Sept. 14, 2010 at 4:14 a.m.

Susan Cattan Rybak and Randy Pollard practice the tango for Thursday's Dancing with the Stars-Victoria Style fundraiser benefiting the Billy T. Cattan Revocery Outreach.

If you go:WHAT: Dancing with the Stars-Victoria style fundraiser for the Billy T. Cattan Recovery Outreach, Inc.

WHEN: From 6:30-10:30 p.m. Thursday

WHERE: Spring Creek Place Events Center, 12116 Nursery Drive.

TICKETS: $45 per person and available at the Victoria Chamber of Commerce or at the door.

For more information, call 361-576-4673. To vote for your favorite couple, go to www.btcro.com.

They're not dance professionals. In fact, for some of them, their expertise of dancing consists mostly of the Chicken Dance at the occasional wedding.

Come Thursday, however, these non-professionals will take to the dance floor after months of grueling rehearsals all in the name of raising money for a good cause.

The Dancing with the Stars-Victoria Style fundraiser, which is modeled after the popular reality TV show, is the first signature event for Billy T. Cattan Recovery Outreach, Inc, an outpatient drug and alcohol treatment center, which is what compelled many of the formerly reluctant participants to put on their dancing shoes.

"I wanted to support the Billy Cattan outreach program. I think it's important and wanted to help. And next year, when I'm sitting in the audience at this event, I will say what a fabulous idea this was," Judge Laura Weiser, who will be dancing the rumba with, Russell Janecka, laughed.

Janecka added that the two had no idea what they were getting into.

"But I'm glad to be doing it," he said.

Since July, the five couples, who will be competing in different ballroom dance styles, have been rigorously rehearsing their routines with the help of longtime dance instructor Sharon Petty of Dance Time.

During the event, a panel of judges will be rating the dancers and people can also vote for their favorite couples online for $10 per vote at the program's website, Susan Cattan Rybak, president emerita of the outreach, said.

"The outreach program was named after my late husband and has been around for 11 years. In all that time, we've never had a signature fundraiser. So when my sister had an event like this, I thought, 'You know what? We could do that,'" she added. "All the money raised will be used to expand our programs and hopefully help us add another counselor, which we desperately need. It would be nice if we could raise $40,000-$50,000. That's my hope."

Founded in November 1999, the outreach program is a faith-based alcohol and chemical dependency treatment facility operating under the Texas Department of State Health Services. It provides outpatient intervention and treatment programs for the adult population, Rybak said.

Taking in patients from Victoria and the surrounding cities, the program has about 130 clients.

The other couples competing at the fundraiser will be Rybak and Randy Pollard, Valerie Ure and Michael Ancarrow, Robbie Lauger and Don Whitaker, and Sharon Elder and Dr. Donald Breech.

"It's a great cause and we're learning to do something we know nothing about. And we still know nothing about," Ancarrow joked. "But we're still definitely going to win."

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