Dance competition looks to change the face of addiction (video)

Bianca Montes By Bianca Montes

Aug. 20, 2013 at 3:20 a.m.
Updated Aug. 21, 2013 at 3:21 a.m.

Deanna Chang, left, and Craig Chang will dance the hustle in Dancing With the Stars Victoria Style, a fundraiser for the Billy T. Cattan Recovery Outreach Center.

Deanna Chang, left, and Craig Chang will dance the hustle in Dancing With the Stars Victoria Style, a fundraiser for the Billy T. Cattan Recovery Outreach Center.   Sarah Ganzhorn for The Victoria Advocate

Dancing with the Stars Victoria Style is all about big, over-the-top productions that trump previous years' efforts.

But, when it comes to choosing what comes first, the music or the concept, event mastermind Susan Rybak said she isn't entirely sure.

On Friday, the fundraiser that benefits the Billy T. Cattan Recovery Outreach Center in Victoria will display famous couples throughout time.

"I started thinking about all the real and imaginary famous couples over time and all the great music that went along with them," Rybak said. "I wanted to have fun with the couples, but I also needed to find great music."

Rybak was not willing to give away any specific details about the famous couples who will be portrayed Friday at the event but said the audience should be prepared to see anything from superhero couples to lovebirds from the silverscreen.

The hustle

Dr. Craig Chang and Deanna Chang moved to Victoria in 2003. Craig is a weight loss surgery doctor at Citizens Medical Center and DeTar Hospital Navarro. His wife is a homemaker who teaches aerobics at the Citizens Health Plex and leads a woman's Bible study at Parkway Church.

The couple said they are not nervous about performing the disco number.

The peabody/charleston

Chris and Carly Wall came to Texas in 2007 after getting their law degrees at Thomas M. Cooley School of law in Lansing, Mich. Wall works as in-house council for The Keeling Auto Group and his wife is a lawyer at Roberts, Roberts, Odefey and Witte in Port Lavaca.

The two admit to stepping into the competition with little to no dance experience and consider themselves challenged with the fast pace of their dance.

The nightclub two step

Abel and Becky Arriazola grew up in Goliad. He has worked in law enforcement for 35 years and is the community services captain at the Victoria County Sheriff's Office. His wife assists business customers with their banking needs at Wells Fargo Bank and has been with the bank for 30 years.

The duo said learning a dance that is out of their comfort zone has inspired them to continue taking lessons. Next time around, they want to learn the waltz.

The fox trot

Dr. Russell Hohlt and Veronica Hohlt moved to Victoria four and a half years ago when Russell Hohlt took a job at DeTar Hospital Navarro doing internal medicine at the senior care center. His wife serves on the board of Theatre Victoria and recently performed in "Beauty and the Beast." She is a breast cancer survivor, and co-chairs the annual Breast Cancer Pink Ribbon.

The couple said they always wanted to take ballroom dancing classes and enjoy practicing outside in the rain.

Beyond the glitz and the glamour of the music and the production, the real story of the evening will focus on the effects addiction has on families.

"Addiction does not just affect one person," Rybak said. "It affects an entire family."

Founded in November 1999, the faith-based alcohol and chemical dependency treatment facility has provided outpatient intervention and treatment programs for about 500 people a year, said executive director Mary Helen Barrick.

"Many people have to go to other cities in order to get the help that they need," Barrick said. "We want to be able to provide what they need here."

Since 2010, the dance fundraiser has grossed about $170,000 for the center, but more importantly, Rybak said, it has helped change the face of addiction.

"It's not a disgrace," she said. "We want to change that image. Drug addiction touches everybody. If we can touch one person in the audience who is sitting there and thinking 'maybe I do need help' or 'maybe I do need to give money,' my job is done."



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