Okanagan teams prepare ahead of COHA Swinging with the Stars fundraising event

WATCH: After almost a three-year hiatus, the annual Swinging with the Stars fundraiser has returned to raise funds for the Central Okanagan Hospice Association. Sydney Morton caught up with one of the teams to find out what it takes to compete.

Dustyn Baulkham of Rebellious Unicorns and performance artist Ella Lamoureux have joined forces to compete in the annual Swinging with the Stars fundraiser for the Central Okanagan Hospice Association.

The not-for-profit association provides palliative care programs and services in the Central Okanagan.

The duo has been rehearsing under the name ‘Sassy Unicorns’ and have been preparing for weeks to put themselves in the spotlight for a good cause.

“We decided that we’re going to do a number of different parts of songs and then mash them together so we have four different dances throughout our almost three-minute dance,” said Baulkham.

Baulkham and Lamoureux are learning from Lucy Hazelwood who teaches at Studio 9 School of the Arts and owns LUKI Dance Productions.

Swinging with the Stars is based on the popular TV show Dancing with the Stars, pairing seven teams with professional dancers who then compete in front of 500 people during the fundraising gala on Feb. 25.

“Our goal is to raise $500,000 this year,” said the executive director of COHA, Natasha Girard.

“I really give kudos to the professional instructors and all the celebrity dancers who really give it 120 per cent to learn, and to really dedicate their time to finesse it to a place that they are ready to perform.”

To reach their $10,000 goal, Team Sassy Unicorns is hosting Drag Queen Bingo events throughout Kelowna. There are two more to go before the gala, one Feb. 2 at Friends of Dorothy Lounge and the last Feb. 5 at Red Bird Brewing. 

“It’s really fun, you get to listen to us, tell jokes and yell bingo numbers,” said Lamoureux.

There is also a 50/50 raffle — one ticket is $5 and five are $20. Baulkham says that if they sell all the tickets there will be $8,900 to be won. Raffle tickets are available at upcoming Rebellious Unicorns events.

There are plenty of ways to support the Swinging with the Stars fundraiser, taking place at the Delta Hotel in Kelowna Feb 25 at 5 p.m. Tickets and tables are still available at www.hospicecoha.org There is also an online auction you can take part in.

© 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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