By KIM LOCCISANO
Times Leader Staff Writer
Final details for the 31st annual Viennese Winter Ball, the major fund raiser for the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra, are coming together seamlessly, assuring the many elegant layers of this standout social event will unfold flawlessly through the course of two splendid events.
T-L Photo/KIM LOCCISANO
Cotillion 2012 members enjoy the opportunity to be part of the traditions of the annual major fund raiser held for the benefit of the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra. Each student earned his or her individual invitation to be part of this select group through volunteering as ushers for performances by the symphony orchestra held locally. The students are practicing for the 31st annual Viennese Winter Ball, which will take place Saturday, Feb. 4 at Glessner Auditorium in Oglebay’s Wilson Lodge.
T-L Photo/KIM LOCCISANO
Learning to dance a waltz takes hours of practice and the addition to a young woman's wardrobe of dance shoes with a proper heel and straps, and the experience of moving gracefully while wearing a traditional hoop skirt.
T-L Photo/KIM LOCCISANO
Cotillion member Kelsey Renee Fithen, a resident of Rayland, and her parents, Rod and Renee Fithen. Kelsey is a senior at The Linsly School and is one of 20 area teens who make up the 2012 Viennese Winter Ball Cotillion. The local teens earned individual opportunities to be asked to join the select group largely through volunteer hours worked ushers for various Wheeling Symphony Orchestra events. She served as a page for the 2011 event.
The magic of this annual fund raising effort begins with the patron party at Oglebay Institute's Stifel Fine Arts Center on Saturday, Jan. 28.
The final layer of elegance associated with the event will be revealed for the enjoyment of all attending the formal dinner and ball set for the evening of Saturday, Feb. 4 at Glessner Auditorium in Oglebay's Wilson Lodge.
Chairing the standout social event this year are Laura Andreini and Dixie Ellwood, both of Wheeling.
A highlight of both evenings will be the participation of a select group of area teens who have invested their personal time in support of the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra by responding to a public invitation open to area high school students to volunteer during the concert season.
Glen Dale resident Jane Helfer is overseeing details of the 20 member cotillion. The 20 members of the 2012 Cotillion are high school seniors.
Young ladies who are members of the 2012 Cotillion are: Kelsey Renee Fithen, daughter of Rod and Renee Fithen of Rayland, attends The Linsly School; Christine Nicholl Gompers, daughter of Matthew and Victoria Gompers of Wheeling, attends Wheeling Central Catholic High School; Elizabeth Stewart Wright, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Wright IV of Wheeling, attends The Linsly School; Christine Frances Fanning, daughter of Robert Fanning and Cheryl Wonderly of Wheeling, attends Wheeling Park High School; Alice Catherine Boos, daughter of Martha Wright of Wheeling and the late Paul Boos, attends Wheeling Park High School; Ashley Victoria Terek, daughter of Christine and Michael Terek of Wheeling, attends Wheeling Park High School; Lauren Nicole Smaltz, daughter of Dr. Virgil and Ms. Frances Smaltz of Wheeling, attends Wheeling Park High School; Emily Sue Hobbs, daughter of Roland and Karen Hobbs of Wheeling, attends The Linsly School; Morgan Leigh McDermott, daughter of Laurie and Greg McDermott of Wheeling, attends The Linsly School; Angela Rose Sparchane, daughter of Nick and Patti Sparachane of Wheeling, attends Wheeling Central Catholic High School.
Young men who are members of the 2012 Cotillion are: James McFarlane McClure, son of Jim and Paula McClure of Triadelphia, attends The Linsly School; Dylan Michael Curtis, son of Rodney and Linda Curtis of Wheeling, attends The Linsly School; Marcus Trent Aquino Saludes, son of Drs. Melvin and Marissa Saludes of Wheeling, attends The Linsly School; John Ross Felton III, son of Jack and Rhonda Felton of Wheeling, attends Wheeling Park High School; Michael Edgar Hooper Jr., son of Michael and Gretchen Hooper of Wheeling, attends Wheeling Park High School; Erik Thomas Gompers, son of Tom and Sarah Gompers of Wheeling, attends Wheeling Central Catholic High School; Anthony Charles Thompson, son of Suzanne Pucharich Thompson and Richard Thompson of Wheeling, attends The Linsly School; James Nicholas Brinsky, son of Mr. Jim Brinsky and Dr. Mary Hammond of Wheeling, attends The Linsly School; Louis Christopher Khourey, son of Louis Harvey Khourey and Charlotte Ann Khourey of Wheeling, attends The Linsly School; James Michael O'Brien II, son of Jim and Denise O'Brien of Wheeling, attends Wheeling Park High School.
Among the various community and service based efforts and academic recognition organizations participated in by Cotillion members, in addition to supporting the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra, are the U.S. Army Ohio National Guard, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, model United Nations Club, the Multicultural Club, Invisible Children, Key Club, SADD, Wheeling Youth Leadership, hospital volunteer activities, Miracle League, Guys and Girls United to Serve, Wheeling Children's Museum, Science Bowl, the American Cancer Society Youth Board, Student Council, Habitat for Humanity, the Wheeling Symphony Youth Orchestra, band, Judicial scholars, Hi-Y, National Honor Society, National Thespian Society, Park Players, Outdoor Adventure Club, the National Forensic League, and serving as class officers or school prefects.
Among the school based sports teams Cotillion members participate in are: tennis, lacrosse, soccer, cross country, swimming, baseball, basketball, softball, fencing, track, football, ice hockey and more.
Invited to participate as Pages for the 2012 fund raiser are several other younger volunteers who have been working in support of the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra: Samantha Dodd, Ashley Grove, Meghan Horan, Christina Klug, Brett Nanners and Emmy Weaver.
On a related note, to purchase a ticket for the Viennese Winter Ball Intermezzo Drawing, contact Saun Capehart at 304-336-8410. Winners need not be present.
Prizes include a $1,000 cash award courtesy of Casey, Chapman and Musket-Attorneys at Law; a $500 cash award courtesy of Dixie and David Ellwood in honor of the Viennese Winter Ball Committee; and a four-strand pearl and crystal necklace courtesy of Joan Stamp-BeadJeweled.
Members of the 2012 Viennese Ball Committee are: Laura Andreini, Jean Bailey, Roanne Burech, Saun Capehart, Ellen Culler, Betsy Delk, Dixie Ellwood, Hali Exley, Jane Helfer, Judi Hendrickson, Sherry Hennen, Gretchen Hooper, Audrey Irvin, Paula McClure, Vicky Musicaro, Phyllis Sigal and Sarah Gompers, who will serve as the 2013 event chairman.
Additional information about the annual fund raiser to benefit the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra, including how to receive event tickets, is available by contacting Jean Bailey at 304-242-0811.
Loccisano can be reached at email@example.com