Updated: August 12, 2013 11:29AM
Being undefeated in any competition in any sport or endeavor is certainly not the norm and is hard to accomplish.
When you are an 8-year-old young lady who happens to love dancing and is overwhelmingly talented, suddenly the impossible becomes possible. Kaci King is an adorable brown-haired cutie who began taking dance lessons when she was 5, at her request and just for fun.
It wasn’t long before the instructors at Eclipse Performing Art Studio in Chesterton, Shannon Williams and Jenna Roberts, realized this mini-dancer delighted in learning all the movements required to be a superb dancer, and thus a star was born. This season, Kaci was No. 1 in her age group in every dance event she entered.
With each win, mom Julie’s smile got wider, and dad John’s chest puffed up more, while Kaci stayed a little lady who just happened to love learning more and more moves and dance steps.
When she earned the championship at the regional dance competition in Chicago this spring, she also was given a scholarship to perform at the ultimate competition — the New York City Dance Alliance — where only the top dancers in the nation are showcased. What an accomplishment and thrill for a youngster training in the small town of Chesterton to be competing against girls whose “profession” is in this field.
That in itself was exciting for the coaches, parents and Kaci. But guess what? The “dark horse” from our county was the youngest dancer to place in the top 10 in this elite and toughest of competitions!
While Kaci stayed her happy, humble self, her mom and coaches were hugging and jumping so high, they almost hit the ceiling. According to Julie, who often cannot believe her daughter’s abilities, “Kaci owns the stage when she does her jazz solo, and has the audience in the palm of her hand.”
It is ironic that she danced to the song “Uncontrollable.”
But the amazing year wasn’t over yet! This past week, Kaci, who qualified for the National Hall of Fame competition held in Ohio, remained undefeated and became the national champion in the age 6-8 category! She received best in category, best choreography and top scorer.
When she is congratulated by anyone, she says “Thanks, I just got lucky.”
No you didn’t, Kaci. You earned every one of your top awards through your desire and work ethic coupled with your humble attitude (and great coaching). Congratulations and a big hug for being a super star. You are my pet person of the week, and I wish you great success always.
I had the pleasure of being in Colorado this past week with our family members who live out there, and beautiful weather and awesome mountains. It was especially wonderful to visit with our daughter, Cheryl, who recently had a mastectomy, just to know that she meant it when she said she was doing great.
I flew there and back on Southwest Airlines, which assigns numbers for boarding rather than assigned seats. On my flight home, a young man and girl walked the aisle back and forth just looking to find places to sit. When they finally stopped by the seats I was at, the guy sat in the middle seat by me, and the girl sat in the middle seat in front of us. It was obvious that she was teary-eyed.
I said to the young man that she didn’t look too happy to be flying. His answer, “We’re just coming back from our honeymoon, and we couldn’t sit together on our way there, and now we can’t again.”
It didn’t take me a second to tap her on the shoulder and ask her if she’d like to trade seats. Her smile was my answer. It cost me nothing, yet you would have thought I’d given them their best wedding gift with their continued thanks.
I tell you this only to remind us all that the little things we do for others so often is a big thing in their lives.
And speaking of little things, a special gift awaited the return from Colorado when we stopped at Porter Hospital on our way home to take a peak at our newest great-grandson, Henry Jacob Noland, compliments of his mom, Karen, and dad, Jacob. Needless to say, he is beautiful. Our blessings are overwhelming and I hope yours are too.
Now I hope you have a great day because you deserve it. Thanks for reading. Fly your flag.