Sunday, April 3, 2016

Alicia Smith Organizes Successful Variety Show; Raises $338 for NEN Hope Foundation

Northeast Nodaway Junior Alicia Smith showed she has many talents. She is an outstanding softball player and cheerleader for Northeast Nodaway. She is also a professional dancer, competing at the regional and national levels. She teaches cheer and dance for a new generation of young Bluejay cheerleaders. Saturday, she successfully organized a variety show for Ravenwood, showcasing talent from around the area. She won Miss Teen Show-Me State Tourism for Missouri and will compete in the national and international pageant this summer, where she will share Missouri with teens from around the country and the world. Saturday's Variety Show successfully raised $338 for the Northeast Nodaway Hope Foundation.

The junior cheerleaders from Northeast Nodaway opened with a routine, followed by a song from Tabby Adwell. The Dymanic Duo, featuring Ms. Smith and Summer Swalley, performed next. Alicia has been in dance for 13 years and Swalley for 12. Linda Adwell, who has played in Branson as as well as area country music shows, played the Unchained Melody on saxophone. Tracy Smith, Alicia's mother, organized a cup race, where contestants had to move the bottom cup to the top until the red cup was on the bottom; it was harder than it looked. A dance trio known as the MDA Trio performed.

Members of the Stanberry Boys Basketball Team performed, putting on a dunk contest as several of their players can dunk. The Bulldogs were the first team in state history to go undefeated in both basketball and football; a few teams had won state in both sports, but Stanberry was the first to go unbeaten in any class. A group of promising Northeast Nodaway elementary boys basketball players were pitted in a game of knockout against the Stanberry team. To make things fairer, the Stanberry players had to shoot from half court; nonetheless, the Stanberry players made things interesting, knocking down a couple of half court shots and knocking out all but two of the local favorites before bowing out.

The next contest was a Minute to Win It contest where two contestants had to shake five ping-pong balls out of a tissue box without using their hands. The winner was Julie (Godsey) Dack, who showed she still has all the right dance moves almost 20 years after graduating from Northeast Nodaway. Northeast second grader Miley Wilmes put on a dance routine and performed at a high school level despite her young years.

Alicia Smith has performed at four Chiefs games and one Harlem Globetrotters game in addition to her competitions; she finally performed in front of her hometown fans with the moral support of the rest of the juniors, who have renamed themselves the Team of 2017 in memory of their late classmate Caleb Adwell. Using a picture of her cousin Caleb, Alicia's solo dance depicted what he was going through as he battled cancer. A.J. Hinson of St. Louis, a Northwest student and teacher of Alicia at the Bearcat Boogie Dance Studio, performed solo next, persevering despite the tape crashing at one point. "Alicia is one of my best students," he said about her afterwards. Finally, three junior cheerleaders performed a Hawaiian dance; one of the performers was Merrideth Adwell, sister of the late Caleb. Her grandmother, Omi, was originally from Hawaii.

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