by Dennis Dalman
The Sartell Sabre Dance Team will host its 12th annual gala fundraising show in two performances at 2 p.m. and 6 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 16 at Sartell High School.
Tickets for the show are $5 for students K-12, $7 for adults and free for children 4 and under.
“It’s our biggest fundraiser of the year,” said Dawn Scott-Yackley of St. Stephen, a member of the Sabre Dancers’ Booster Club. The show is also important because it’s the first time all area high schools will perform, in one place, the competitive routines they will perfect throughout the upcoming competitive season, which starts next week.
There are 500 dancers in the show, including 31 on the Sabre competitive team. Head coach Kelly McCarney has coached the Sabre team for 12 years. She started coaching it when she was 19 years old.
The show will showcase the talents of dancers from several schools and dance studios. They include the St. Cloud Tech Tigerettes, the St. Cloud Apollo Astronettes, the St. Cloud Cathedral Crusaderettes, the Sauk Rapids-Rice Storm, the Cold Spring Rocori Rockettes, the University of Minnesota Dance Team (Rochester), Just for Kix, Ms. Melinda’s Dance Team, St. Cloud Northcrest Dance and the St. Cloud School of Dance and Gymnastics and – last but certainly not least – the Sabre Dance Team. The show will also present, once again, the perennially popular guy-gal dance.
There will be concessions, T-shirts and flowers to purchase during the show, which typically draws a standing-room-only audience.
Scott-Yackley said that without volunteer help from parents, the annual dance shows would not be possible. All of the behind-the-scenes work is done by volunteers, as well as the support work during the show and the take-downs after the show.
The booster club is also a big help, she added.
“The club helps with anything that needs to be done,” Scott-Yackley said. “The members help organize, publicize, help the coaches, get parent volunteers together. They sell tickets, do decorations, work at concessions. Parents take part in all of that. That’s true of all the schools that have dance programs.
Scott-Yackley and her husband, John, have two daughters on the Sabre Dance Team – Amanda, a senior; and Hannah, a sophomore.
“The dance team helps girls grow into young ladies,” she said. “It helps them become much better people, and they learn how to become good students and to juggle (the demands of) life. They work as a team and they bond and make friendships. It’s just incredible to watch that process. My daughters just love being a part of that team.”
Dalman was born and raised in South St. Cloud, graduated from St. Cloud Tech High School, then graduated from St. Cloud State University with a degree in English (emphasis on American and British literature) and mass communications (emphasis on print journalism). He studied in London, England for a year (1980-81) where he concentrated on British literature, political science, the history of Great Britain and wrote a book-length study of the British writer V.S. Naipaul. Dalman has been a reporter and weekly columnist for more than 30 years and worked for 16 of those years for the Alexandria Echo Press.