Last week we checked in on the practice sessions of three competitors for the upcoming Dancing with the Celebrities competition, including Fire Chief Mark Puknaitis, City Councilman Kenn Miller and Naperville Magazine Publisher Leah Rippe.
This week we headed back to the dance studio for a sneak peek at the routines of State Representative Darlene Senger, City Manager Doug Krieger, and City Councilman Grant Wehrli.
Krieger and his partner Susan Cole pay tribute to the rhythm of the 1930’s with his Jitterbug.
“Each step individually isn’t that tough,” said Krieger. “But when you string 20 to 30 of them together in a different order; you need to get it right or everyone’s going to know. I think I came from such a horrible place, to be able to see the improvement has surprised even myself.”
But Krieger and Cole say all that fancy footwork wasn’t even the hardest part.
“We just started working on lifts, and it requires him to lift me,” said Cole. “And those are a little scary for anyone at first. But I trust him, he hasn’t dropped me yet.”
“She thinks I’m going to drop her, I won’t drop her,” said Krieger.
Just before Krieger was swinging around the dance floor, State Representative Darlene Senger and her partner Joshua Torres were entwined in their traditional tango.
“It looks neat when you get it,” said Senger. “It is a lot of fun. It’s drama, but for once it’s not drama in politics. I’m OK with that too.”
Senger isn’t shy when it comes to politics, but says ballroom dancing is really pushing her out of her comfort zone.
“Just the fact that I’m doing something I couldn’t do before, is really neat,” said Senger. “The other piece is gaining the confidence that hopefully by the 22nd I can pull this off. I can’t say ‘stop’ and start again.”
Senger isn’t the only one facing down the butterflies in her stomach. A reluctant Councilman Wehrli originally said ‘no’ when approached to do the competition. But his wife said ‘yes.’
“I’m not nervous like nervous,” said Wehrli. “It’s not fear, it’s not nerves, but I know it’s going to be a minute and a half of humiliation. But it’s for a good cause.”
NCTV17’s cameras finally caught up to Wehrli and his partner Kelly Barhaugh doing the swing, and he realized he’s not that much different than everyone else.
“When I see that Mr. Krieger had to learn how to do the cuddle, and some other dance moves, I did have to revoke his man card,” said Wehrli. “But then I found out that one of the moves that I had to learn was the cuddle. I haven’t told the city manager that yet.”
The Dancing with the Celebrities competition takes place September 22nd at Meson Sabika.
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