Young Harris College’s Board of Associates will present the fourth annual Big Dance featuring The Grapevine live in concert on Saturday, March 15, in the YHC Recreation and Fitness Center. This enjoyable evening of live music and fun fellowship for a great cause benefits YHC’s Local Scholarship Campaign.
Guests will dance the night away while raising scholarship funds for more than 200 local students from Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Rabun, Towns and Union counties in Georgia and Cherokee and Clay counties in North Carolina.
“I am truly blessed to live in a community that is willing to help me further my education,” said Samantha Loudermilk, a junior English major from Murphy, N.C. “Receiving a scholarship has allowed me to attend this wonderful College. YHC is committed to helping students reach their full potential in order to have a successful future.”
YHC is committed to providing scholarships for local students. For the 2013-2014 academic year, more than $3.3 million was awarded to students from nearby counties.
During last year’s Big Dance, around 600 guests helped raise more than $11,000 in scholarship funds. YHC’s Board of Associates, a group of local business and civic leaders established in 1991, present the event. The Board serves as a sounding board for the surrounding regions and meets regularly with YHC President Cathy Cox and other administrators to discuss areas of mutual concern and interest.
“I have always considered it an honor and a privilege to act as an ambassador for the College in the community,” said Big Dance Committee Chair Don Schneider, a civic leader in Hiawassee. “We are fortunate to live in the beautiful mountains of north Georgia and western North Carolina, and are even more fortunate to have YHC as our neighbor. Being on the Board is my way of giving something back to the College.”
At the start of each academic year, the Board hears from YHC students who benefit from the Local Scholarship Campaign. Students often mention that without the scholarships provided, they may not have been able to attend YHC.
“Listening to these testimonials has made me a firm believer in this campaign,” said Schneider. “I strongly believe that the efforts of the Board to raise scholarship dollars are for a truly worthy cause. We are literally helping a student through school.”
The College will welcome a new band to the Big Dance this year. Since 1987, The Grapevine has electrified audiences across Georgia. Based in Macon, the band has a diverse repertoire with styles that include Motown, beach music, pop, soft rock and more. They are previous recipients of the prestigious “Band of the Year” title awarded by the Atlanta Society of Entertainers.
“If you like to dance, chances are that by the end of the event, you will probably need to have your shoes resoled from burning too much leather on the dance floor,” said Schneider. “Joking aside, everyone knows that the Big Dance is for a great purpose. Where else can someone have a good time, get some exercise on the dance floor and contribute to a great cause at the same time?”
The event is sponsored by Piedmont Heart Institute, Piedmont Mountainside Hospital, Blue Ridge Mountain EMC, The Copper Door, Fieldstone Resort, Holiday Inn Express Hiawassee, Britt McAfee Law Firm, Mountain Realty, Georgia Mountain Laurel, Union General Hospital, Mountain Graphics and Wal-Mart in Blairsville.
Patrons may bring their own food and beverage, or pre-order from a variety of dining packages by The Copper Door. All attendees are encouraged to participate in a free table decorating contest, and winners will receive a complimentary table at next year’s Big Dance.
Doors open at 6 p.m., and music begins at 7:30 p.m. Tables for eight are available for $225, and individual tickets are available for $40. To register for the event, visit yhc.edu/bigdance, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (706) 379-5173.
Check out a live performance of The Grapevine here.