Dancing with the Clinton County stars raises $26K

Dancing with the Clinton County stars raises $26K

Dr. Jill Thompson takes mirror ball trophy

By Nathan Kraatz


Bryan Wallingford learns how to do the nae nae from 8-year-old Lauren Diels.

Sonya Crawford and Dessie Rogers dance to “Imma Be.”

From left, (front) director Rhonda Wheasler, pro partners Dessie Rogers and Erin Moore, stars Sarah Hawley, Dr. Jill Thompson, Sonya Crawford, Leva Bath and Bobbie Schlaegel, 2014 winner Terri Roberts, (back) stars Jessie Littleton, Rick Hosler, Tim Wiederhold, Duane Weyand, Greg Nielsen and pro partners Timothy Larrick and Cole Haugh.

WILMINGTON — Dr. Jill Thompson won Saturday night’s Dancing with the Clinton County Stars, the second such event, which raises funds for the Murphy Theatre.

“It was a really great experience,” said Thompson. “I grew up in Port William and when we were kids, that’s where you went to see the movies, pretty much to do anything. That was a staple growing up in the community.”

Thompson, who owns Country View Pet Hospital and is a veterinarian there, said the invitation was initially daunting, but she came to enjoy the “once in a lifetime experience” and encouraged others to step outside of their comfort zones.

The event raised $26,827.07 for the theatre, money which will be used for tuck pointing the brickwork of the almost 100-year-old theatre. The roof of the building has been repaired, and once the tuck pointing is done, the building will be better protected from water intrusion.

Other projects planned include plaster repair, restoration and decorative repainting.

Thompson won the mirror ball trophy, which is awarded to the participant who raised the most money. She beat Greg Nielsen, CEO of Clinton Memorial Hospital Regional Health System, by $1.44.

Last year, the event raised $16,000. Neither total includes ticket sales to the sold-out events.

CMH also matched the donations, according to Neilsen.

Thompson also won the audience’s favorite, which is determined by most applause as measured by a decibel-measuring device.

Bobbie Jo Schlaegel also took home a trophy, winning judge’s favorite.

Also in the awards, Wilmington Mayor Randy Riley presented a key to the city and a proclamation to Rhonda Wheasler, the director of the show. The proclamation declared Oct. 24, 2015 Charlie (Murphy) and Rhonda Day.

Riley also presented a key to the city to professional partners Dessie Rogers, Timothy Larrick, Erin Moore and Cole Haugh and emcee Bryan Wallingford.


Reach Nathan Kraatz at 937-382-2574, ext. 2510 or on Twitter @NathanKraatz.

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