DecaDance 2006 is set for Dec. 24

BY JILL KASSANDER, SPECIAL TO THE JEWISH LIGHT

If you are Jewish and single then the second annual DecaDANCE 2006 is the place to be on Dec. 24. This year the event presented by B’nai B’rith St. Louis and the St. Louis Jewish Light promises to be better than ever. The spectacular evening at the Marriott St. Louis Airport Hotel features an extravagant dessert buffet, dancing, prizes, raffles and cash bar.

There are many special additions to the annual event this year. They have designed a special signature drink called the “mazeltini.” The dessert buffet will include a chocolate fountain and fresh fruit and cheese. There will be plenty of room for dancing and visiting since the event will encompass the entire top floor of the hotel. A phenomenal disc jockey will be playing dance tunes throughout the night. Attendees will also have a chance to win one of the door prizes or purchase tickets for wonderful raffle items which include: a $200 gift certificate from Office Essentials, beautiful Swarovski crystal earrings, a necklace and bracelet valued at $150 from Design-Your-Gift, a boxed selection of wines from the Wine Guy and a St. Louis Cardinals basket of goodies.

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The inspiration for the dance was the “Night of Hope” put on by the Jewish Community Center Singles program years ago. The program had been a fundraiser as well as a social event. It was no longer in place when B’nai B’rith St. Louis hired director Michelle Gralnick several years ago to focus on singles. She interviewed several people in the community to find out what they missed most about the JCC singles program and discovered the one event “they kept raving about” was the Night of Hope.

Gralnick revived the evening of fun and socializing for Jewish singles though it currently is a social event only.

“Our hope is as this annual event grows and attracts more sponsors we will be able to add the charity piece,” Gralnick said. “The money raised would benefit B’nai B’rith charities which include the B’nai B’rith Youth Organization and the B’nai B’rith Cares for Kids program which delivers Teddy Bears to children in hospitals all year round.”

The dance offers an important social opportunity for Jewish singles. While there seems to be limitless social gatherings for couples and families through synagogues and agencies in St. Louis, the same does not hold true for Jewish singles. Though Gralnick is quick to point out this is not a “dating-mating” organization. The dance is strictly a social event designed for adult singles from their 20s on up. There are no membership requirements for attending the dance.

This year they broadened their audience by sending press releases about the dance to Chicago, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Louisville, Memphis, Nashville and Omaha. The hotel is offering a special $65 rate to facilitate out-of-town attendance.

“It’s a night for people to come out and enjoy themselves,” Gralnick said. “There will be good food, good music and good company.”

While there won’t be any duck dancing, chicken dancing or hokey pokey, you should brush up on your electric slide and the cha cha slide. Of course the latter gives directions on which foot to move, where to move it and how to move as part of the song lyrics. Gralnick promises be on the dance floor to give guidance to the rhythmically challenged.

The second annual December DecaDANCE is Sunday, Dec. 24, from 8 p.m. until midnight on the ninth floor of the Marriott St. Louis Airport Hotel. Tickets are $30 (cash only) at the door. Festive attire — fancier than blue jeans but not black tie — is suggested. For more information call Michelle Gralnick at 314-569-4122 or send an email to: [email protected] Parking tickets will be validated at the event.

The 2006 December DecaDANCE is sponsored by MatchBook and the Fox Family Foundation, and in partnership with Sparks Matchmaking Service, Randye Lyle and Office Essentials, Inc., Sam Black of Design-Your-Gift and the Jewish Community Center.

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