MARSHALL - From the adorable 3-year-olds dancing to "Big Girls Don't Cry" to the veterans performing to "Dream on Dreamer," the Marshall Just for Kix dancers are gearing up for their end-of-the-season show.
The Marshall Just for Kix spring show will be at 3:30 p.m. Sunday in the Marshall High School gym and will feature 285 dancers from around the Marshall area.
This season, the Just for Kix program launched an anti-bullying campaign, Dancers for a Difference, Marshall JFK coach Jackie Louwagie said, which incorporates such phrases as "Rise Above," "Do Your Best," "Be Proud" and "Express Yourself." Louwagie said she's been talking about the campaign with her younger classes.
"We've really been stressing the teamwork and not being just a great dancer but a great girl as well."
Teamwork has been important this year, Marshall JFK dancers said. The season has been interesting with having to deal with canceling practices because of the weather, said competition dancers Hailey Allen and Courtney Deutz
"It's been hard because you have to reschedule the practices and when everybody's free for practice," Allen said.
Despite the limited number of practices, the JFK competition teams did well this year, Louwagie and the dancers said.
"I'm happy with the season, I think we've done really good," Deutz said.
"We've had a great season," Allen said.
Now that the competition season is over, the girls said they're looking forward to the laid-back and fun atmosphere of the spring show.
"I like the fact I get to dance in front of my hometown," Allen said. She said it will give a chance for those who haven't gone to the JFK competitions to see what the teams had to offer this year.
"I like performing without the stress of competition," Deutz said.
For the spring show, several dancers in preschool through third grade are taking to the dance floor with their dads for the father-daughter dance.
"There's 35 duos, so it's going to be a big one," Louwagie said. The couples are dancing to a medley of songs about heroes, and the fathers are wearing red capes and a Superman T-shirt, Louwagie said. "They do leaps and Russians."
The show will have several genres of music, Louwagie said.
"We've got some disco songs in the show, some Taylor Swift, Disney," Louwagie said, adding that there will be a couple of salsa numbers as well.
Louwagie said senior dancers and instructors - Courtney Waknitz, Melissa Stassen and Hannah Enderson - will receive a special recognition at the event, which also features the younger dancers and the competition teams.
Louwagie said the grand finale is to Whitney Houston's "Greatest Love of All."
"It encompasses second- through 12th-graders, so there's going to be a lot of girls on the floor," Louwagie said. She said they've only had one mass rehearsal for the number, and the teams have been working on their own individual parts. "I think it's going to be very emotional and touching."