By ERIC AYRES
ST. CLAIRSVILLE - Families throughout the Ohio Valley with students in kindergarten through sixth grade are invited to shake off the winter blues this Friday night at the 2017 Royal Family Snowflake Ball.
The St. Clairsville High School/Middle School Cafetorium will be teeming with children ready to get dressed up and dance away the winter blues Friday night when the St. C. Singers play host to the 2017 Royal Family Snowflake Ball.
Presented by the St. C. Singers, the annual winter family dance will take place from 6-8 p.m. Friday at the St. Clairsville High School/Middle School Cafetorium. There will be music, refreshments, activities and fun for the whole family.
The Royal Family Snowflake Ball has been a mid-winter tradition for many years. The community event is not only a great way for families with young children to spend a fun evening out together, but it's also an important fundraiser for St. Clairsville High School's show choir, the St. C. Singers.
What first began as a father-daughter dance - previously known as the Snowflake Princess Ball - has evolved and expanded into an event that aims to involve the entire family. Girls and boys in elementary and early middle school grades enjoy getting an opportunity to dress up, dance and mingle with members of the St. C. Singers, who will be on hand during the event.
"We encourage families - children and parents alike - to have fun and dress up for the event, but it's certainly not required," Kimber Thornton, member of the St. Clairsville Vocal Music Boosters and chairwoman of this year's Royal Snowflake Ball, said.
Area DJ Mr. Moe and the Music Machine will provide music for dancing, and photographer Laura Zavatsky will be taking photo potraits for singles, couples or groups. Portraits will be available for purchase, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the St. C. Singers. Flowers promoting autism awareness also will be available for purchase
There will be games, a quarter raffle with gift baskets, prizes, a candy table and a smorgasbord of sweet treats.
The cafetorium will be decorated in royal winter decor, and most of the attendees to the ball - including members of the St. C. Singers - will be dressing up for the formal-for-fun event. Admission will be accepted at the door, and a specified donation covers admission for the entire family.
"Everyone is invited," Thornton said, noting families don't have to be from the St. Clairsville-Richland City School District to come out for a night of fun. "We've broadened the invitation to include all families with children in kindergarten through sixth grade.
"This family dance also gives us a chance to get local children interested in the St. C. Singers program at an early age. It's just a wonderful opportunity to come out and support our award-winning Singers, give a little spark to the wintertime and enjoy a night out with the family."
As the only high school show choir in the Ohio Valley, the St. C. Singers - along with their families and fans - travel to competitions at schools in that are typically two to three hours away in the far reaches of Ohio and West Virginia.
The 2017 high school show choir season officially has begun. In their first competition of the season on Jan. 14, the St. C. Singers brought home the first-place trophy in Class C and the overall award for best stage crew from the Piqua Show Choir Invitational in Piqua, Ohio. The group traveled to Hurricane, W.Va., with their 2017 show "Genesis Revolution" to compete in the Hurricane Red Hot Championship 2017 this past Saturday. Looking ahead, the Singers will compete Feb. 11 at the Cabell Midland Rhythm in Red Invitational in Ona, W.Va., and Feb. 18 at the South Harrison Showcase in Lost Creek, W.Va.
Locally, people of the Ohio Valley will have a chance to see the show when the St. C. Singers host their annual winter spaghetti dinner fundraiser on Feb. 9 at St. Clairsville High School. The Singers will also perform and host the highly anticipated return of their Showcase of Sound - St. Clairsville Class C Championship on Feb. 25 at Buckeye Local High School in Rayland.
The St. C. Singers will wrap up the season during during this year's trip to Nashville, Tenn., where members of the Singers and St. Clairsville High School's Chamber Choir and Concert Band will perform before nationally recognized judges and experience the sights and sounds of Music City.
For more information about the 2017 Royal Snowflake Ball, email firstname.lastname@example.org.