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Couples dance for championships

Looking for something to do? Here's a super calendar, ranging from ballroom dancing to buying peanuts and crackerjacks at the ballpark.

By SHANNON BREEN, Times Staff Writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published July 26, 2002

Sarah and Scott Coates found romance and trophies through the power of dance.

The couple met at a dance studio and have gone on to become five-time current U.S. Amateur Ballroom Dancing Association winners.

They hope to remain on top tonight at Millennium Dancesport Championships' International Championship Ballroom Competition in Tampa.

Sarah, 56, a South Tampa native and Plant High School alum, says she still gets nervous about dancing in front of others.

"I remember Carol Burnett saying that she still gets butterflies to this day because there's so much energy and ambience," she says. "It's just quite a Las Vegas experience."

Couples traveling from 16 countries also vie for titles.

Five U.S. champions, representing American rhythm, ballroom, Latin, American smooth and cabaret dance styles, will compete for the Millennium Dancesport Championship Title.

With Ginger Rogers-types lobbying the Olympic Committee to include ballroom dancing on the ballot, the sport has risen to prominence. Some say it may find a place in the 2004 Olympics.

Dr. Laurie Collette, a neurologist and medical freelance writer, and her retired Navy chief husband, Richard, got the dancing bug in Puerto Rico in 1987. The Temple Terrace couple have been dancing competitively ever since. Collette, 49, and Richard, 54, own the Rhapsody Ballroom in Tampa.

Competitions, which include children's events, take place in the Grand Ballroom of the Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel, 700 S Florida Ave.

Day sessions are from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday ($15 admission); evening sessions, from 8 p.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday ($35-$45).

A $100-a-ticket gala benefitting The Spring of Tampa Bay is planned for Saturday evening.

For details, call 681-9749.


OZZFEST 2002: Had enough of the $&#@! Osbournes? If not, the option of driving four hours to see TV's most famous patriarch is on the table. This year's guests include Rob Zombie, System of a Down, P.O.D., Drowning Pool, Adema, Black Society Label, the Apex Theory, among many others. Now that Ozzy has evolved from bat biter to family man, baby boomers have located MTV on the dial. But the majority of Ozzfest fans come from Generation X and Y. From 9:30 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Mars Music Amphitheatre, 601 Sansburys Way, West Palm Beach; $45.50-$75.50. Call 287-8844.

SCHOOLHOUSE ROCK: Schoolhouse Rock is one of many artifacts from the 1970s that is still in existence today. In the mid-1970s, ABC-TV aired these short cartoons, which taught a generation about government, history, grammar, science and math. 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Gorilla Theatre, 4419 N Hubert Ave., Tampa; $5-$10. Call 879-2914.

BOOK DISCUSSION: Diane Ahlquist holds a new age book discussion based on her book, White Light: The Complete Guide to Spells and Rituals for Psychic Protection. 7:30 p.m.; Barnes & Noble, 11802 N Dale Mabry Highway; free. Call 962-6446.

CRAIG SHOEMAKER: You may have seen him the film Scream 2 or on Entertainment Tonight, Howard Stern, and Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn. Shoemaker was named "Comedian of the Year" by the American Comedy Awards. At 8 and 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Tickets $12-$14); 8:30 p.m. Sunday. (tickets $8); Side Splitters, 12938 N Dale Mabry Highway. Call 960-1197.

JEAN LUC PONTY: Ponty was born into a family of classical musicians in France. His father taught violin, his mother taught piano. It is not much of a surprise that their son shares musical talent. 7 p.m.; Jannus Landing; $20. Call 287-8844.


MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL: NEW YORK YANKEES AT TAMPA BAY DEVIL RAYS. 7:15 p.m.; Tropicana Field; $14-$195. Call 287-8844.


SYSTEM OF A DOWN: The band is known for their self-titled debut album with songs like Suite Pee and KNOW. The second album Toxicity came out in September. System of a Down sings about crime, politics and anger, blending metal, rap, hardcore, jazz and Middle-Eastern melodies. 7:30 p.m.; USF Sun Dome; $27. Call 287-8844.

ALL ABOUT KIDS: Meeting Willy Wonka (not Gene Wilder) with his Wonka Mobile or having your photo taken with Sylvester and Tweety are two of the many options in 75 interactive play areas for kids and their families during this two-day event. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sat.; noon to 4 p.m. Sunday; Tampa Convention Center; free for children 12 and under, $7 adults. Call 335-2689.

BROADWAY 2002: A musical revue, Broadway 2002 features students from Tony-award winner Ann Reinking's Broadway Theatre Project. 3 to 8 p.m.; Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center; $35. Call 287-8844.

MINOR LEAGUE BASEBALL: BASEBALL CITY ROYALS AT CLEARWATER PHILLIES. Noon; Jack Russell Stadium, Clearwater; $6-$13. Call (727) 441-8638.


MINOR LEAGUE BASEBALL: SARASOTA RED SOX AT TAMPA YANKEES. 7 p.m.; Legends Field; $3-$5. Call 287-8844.

LINK WRAY: Roots rock guitarist, Wray lets his fingers do the walking with southern R&B rock 'n' roll. 8 p.m.; Skipper's Smokehouse; $15-$20. Call 287-8844.

MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL: NEW YORK YANKEES AT TAMPA BAY DEVIL RAYS. 6:15 p.m.; Tropicana Field; $14-$195. Call 287-8844.

28 -- SUNDAY

DINE WITH THE DEVIL RAYS: Rays' wives, players and coaches serve dinner and beverages to those attending. Proceeds benefit the Florida Chapter of the ALS Association, which provides services throughout Florida to patients with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, commonly known as Lou Gehrig's Disease. Silent auction includes autographed, collectible sports items from other major league players. Reservations required. 6 p.m.; Grill at Feather Sound, Clearwater; $125. Call 874-2122.

BAD COMPANY WITH NIGHT RANGER: One of the most acclaimed bands of the classic rock era, England's Bad Company put its stamp on rock 'n' roll with timeless rock anthems: Can't Get Enough, Movin' On, Ready For Love, Rock Steady and Bad Company. Led by the Paul Rodgers "The Voice," the current band also features the original lineup drummer, Simon Kirke. 7 p.m.; Ruth Eckerd Hall, Clearwater; $43.50-$47.50. Call 287-8844.

CINDERELLA: The hard rock glam band that formed in Pennsylvania in the mid-1980s does not turn into a pumpkin after midnight. The band was discovered in a bar by Jon Bon Jovi and signed to Mercury Records. 7 p.m.; Jannus Landing, 16 Second St. N, St. Petersburg; $17. Call 287-8844.

MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL: NEW YORK YANKEES AT TAMPA BAY DEVIL RAYS. 1:15 p.m. Tropicana Field; $14-$195. Call 287-8844.

29 -- MONDAY

MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL: BALTIMORE ORIOLES AT TAMPA BAY DEVIL RAYS. 7:15 p.m.; Tropicana Field; $14-$195. Call 287-8844.

MINOR LEAGUE BASEBALL: LAKELAND TIGERS AT CLEARWATER PHILLIES. 7 p.m.; Jack Russell Memorial Stadium, 800 Phillies Drive, Clearwater; $6-$13; Call (727) 441-8638.


WINE TASTING: Roy's will be the host of a five-course wine dinner "California Dreamin," featuring a variety of California wines, paired with Hawaiian Fusion selections created by Chef Rand G. Packer. 6:30 p.m.; Roy's, 4342 W Boy Scout Blvd.; $75 plus gratuity. For reservations, call 873-7697.

MINOR LEAGUE BASEBALL: CHARLOTTE RANGERS AT CLEARWATER PHILLIES. 7 p.m.; Jack Russell Memorial Stadium, Clearwater; $6-$13. (727) 441-8638.


MINOR LEAGUE BASEBALL: CHARLOTTE RANGERS AT CLEARWATER PHILLIES. Noon; Jack Russell Memorial Stadium, Clearwater; $6-$13. Call (727) 441-8638.


MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL: BALTIMORE ORIOLES AT TAMPA BAY DEVIL RAYS. 7:15 p.m.; Tropicana Field; $14-$195. Call 287-8844.


SAMMY HAGAR AND DAVID LEE ROTH: Ex-Van Halen frontmen Sammy Hagar and David Lee Roth put aside nearly two decades of mutual animosity to join forces for a co-headlining summer tour. The two team up for a night of I'm Just a Gigolo and I Can't Drive 55. Roth co-founded the group in 1974 with guitarist Eddie Van Halen; Van Halen's older brother, drummer Alex; and bassist Michael Anthony. Hagar took over when Roth exited in the mid 1980s. He left in the mid 1990s. 7:30 p.m.; Ice Palace; $23.25-$53.25. Call 287-8844.

MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL: BALTIMORE ORIOLES AT TAMPA BAY DEVIL RAYS. 7:15 p.m.; Tropicana Field; $14-$195. Call 287-8844.


  • RACHAEL LAMPA: Aug. 2, Manatee Civic Center, Palmetto.
  • DARDEN SMITH: Aug. 3, Skipper's Smokehouse, Tampa.
  • TOOL: Aug. 4, TECO Arena, Fort Myers.
  • BLONDIE: Aug. 6, House of Blues, Orlando.


  • BILLY RAY CYRUS: Aug. 17, Ruth Eckerd Hall.
  • THE MALE INTELLECT: AN OXYMORON: Aug. 20, Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center.
  • EMINEM: Aug. 31, Ice Palace.
  • CHER AND CYNDI LAUPER: Sept. 2, Ice Palace.
  • ELTON JOHN AND BILLY JOEL: Sept. 13, Ice Palace.
  • THREE DOG NIGHT: Sept. 14, Rock Crusher Canyon, Crystal River.
  • MARC ANTHONY: Sept. 17, Ice Palace.
  • OLIVIA NEWTON-JOHN: Sept. 21, Ruth Eckerd Hall.
  • BOW WOW: Sept. 27, Ice Palace.

City Times: The rest of the stories

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  • On the outside, looking in
  • Selling a homey feeling
  • A courtly couple
  • Bringing home style
  • As mother, wife she 'selflessly served'
  • Couples dance for championships
  • A shot at a table that fits
  • Matching pool tables to homes
  • Fitness club to stretch its reach
  • Glass art furniture
  • Good timing blessed Hyde Park
  • $3-million set aside to restore 1930s pool
  • 3 housing projects inching forward
  • Dredging clears way for big ships in channel
  • How will Big Macs blend into Ybor City?
  • Road projects offer relief to New Tampa commuters
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