5-6-7-8 -- Dancing the Olympic Dream!

[5]~~Dance is headed to the Olympics! [6]~~I'm on the USA DanceSport Team invited to Taiwan [7]~~I need $4,543 for the trip [8]~~Donate Now!
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Tony New
Dance
Dallas, Texas
United States
5 Team Members

Banner image credit: Beth Rooney Photography

Me Competing at the 2006 Gay Games in Chicago!

I'm pretty sure you want to know:

"Who the heck is this guy?  And, why does he need the bucks?"

My name is Tony New. I am an eight-time World Champion in Country Western Dance.

I am honored to have won a spot on the USA DanceSport Team headed to compete in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, at the World DanceSport Games

These games are a preliminary step to including DanceSport in the Olympics and they are a once-in-a-life time chance to learn what an Olympian feels like!

HOWEVER, I am unemployed and can not afford the expenses to go with the Team.

UNLESS... 
I raise the money with the support of generous backers like you!

[5] FOR INSTANT GRATIFICATION:
      Pick your Reward & Make your donation NOW!
... It will make you feel warm and fuzzy! (time: 2 minutes start to finish)  ;-)

[6] NEED A WEE BIT MORE INFO?
      Pick your Reward & Make your donation NOW!
... THEN Watch the Video up top  *grin*  (time: 6 thoroughly enjoyable min. start to finish)  :-)

[7] WANT THE FULL STORY?
       Pick your Reward & Make your donation NOW!
... THEN Watch the Video and Read the rest of this Page. (tee-hee)
(time: 15 highly entertaining, infinitely informative, min. start to finish) :-)

[8] STRETCH GOALS:
IF this project "goes viral," I will use any extra money to prepare for and to attend the 2014 Olympiad and try for a spot on the 2014 DanceSport Team! 

[DANCE!]
I can provide a detailed project budget... ...calculated down to the penny, to anyone who wants it. Just hit the contact button if you're really into numbers or if you need to fall asleep quickly. :-)

 

THANK YOU for your time, and for your donation!

  • You have hit that "DONATE" button haven't you?  Hmmmm?  *grin*
    • If you can't donate then HELP SPREAD THE WORD!!! 
      • "Like & Share" on all your social networks!

 

Now that you've Donated and Shared, here is your first reward:

Sit back and enjoy the "FULL STORY" chock full of International Intrigue, info about yours truly and..., of course... DRAMA!  

Psssssttttt... for you "Type A" personalities... everything below is basically the same thing that you've already read up to this point, just more of it. 

Outline above, greater detail below.  The essential meaning is the same.

SO... If you just "DONATE" and leave now, that's OK. 
For the rest of you folks, enjoy the shennaigans!

 ... let's get this dance started!  I'll count you in...

Donate and help me get to Kaohsiung Taiwan!!!!

[5] The story begins...  DanceSport is headed to the Olympic Games!

World DanceSport Federation LogoOfficials at the IOC, they run the Olympic Games, have acknowledged the WDSF as the official International Organization governing DanceSport, which includes all forms of competitive dance:  Ballroom, Swing, Acrobatic Rock n'Roll, and many more.

UCWDC Logo - United Country Western Dance Council LogoThe UCWDC, as an Associate Member of WDSF, has been recognized by the IOC as governing all forms of Line Dance and Country Western Dance. [Those are my sports! Woo Hoo!]

[Is it just me? Or do all these letters make you hungry for Alphabet Soup? Jus' sayin'  But I digress... ...I do that a lot ya know.  *grin*]

[Back to the the tales of International Intrigue...] One of the many mileposts on the way to adding DanceSport to the Olympic Games occurs Sept 2013 when Taiwan hosts the very FIRST World DanceSport Games! 

With IOC Observers on hand, the Games in Kaohsiung will operate under IOC protocols and demonstrate the viability of Competition DanceSport as an Olympic event, with all the trappings of the Olympic Games:

  • Opening Ceremonies with athletes representing their countries marching in behind their National Flags
  • Medal Ceremonies with podiums, medals, & national anthems
  • Tears of Joy; the Agony of Defeat 
  • And everywhere will be examples of the Olympic Creed:

"The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not to win but to take part, just as the most important thing in life is not the triumph but the struggle. The essential thing is not to have conquered but to have fought well."

United States Olympic Team - London 2012 - Marching into the Olympic Stadium

[There will also be little plastic cups to tinkle in for drug testing!  Can you Bee-LEAVE there is 50 pages of prohibited drugs!?  Who knew!?  I didn't!  Not until I signed the antidoping form!   But I digress.. :-)  ...I told you I do that!]

So... IOC Observers will be at the World DanceSport Games checking things out...

 AND SO WILL I ...  IF generous backers like you support my project!!

The bigger your pledge, the bigger the reward!  Woo Hoo!  
Can we have a Yeee Haww!!?

Donate and help me get to Kaohsiung Taiwan!!!!

[6] The story continues...
How I won a spot on the USA Team!

Tony New at the 2013 Olympiad winning a spot on the USA DanceSport TeamWhen UCWDC announced the "2013 Olympiad" to pick the members of the USA DanceSport Team, the odds of me winning looked very good.

So... I head off to Nashville, confident in my chances... 

But WAIT! There was DRAMA! 

I was in the practice room at the event running my routines and...

[cue the sinister foreboding music]

[Da-tah-dah-DUM] ...I wrenched my knee.  OUCH!!! 

After the immediate pain subsided, I tried to dance each of the 5 dances required to qualify as a "full program"

...but the knee hurt too much.  *SIGH*

Photo Used Courtesy of Moon Dance Studios

So, I went to see the Team Coach:

Me: [looking like a kid who just heard Christmas was cancelled] ...I am so sorry, but, I've injured my knee and I'm going to have to scratch.

Coach: Can you dance any of the dances?

Me:  [looking puzzled] I can do the West Coast with no problem.

Coach: Can you do ANY of the others?

Me: Uhmm, [looking even more puzzled] I could do the Waltz if I do a floor sweep instead of a ronde.  Doing the other three dances  risks causing more damage.

Coach:  Then there's no problem.  You only need 2 dances to qualify for the Team, not a full program of 5.

Team USA DAnceSport[cue the heavenly choir and the 5-piece band and the 100 maidens strewing rose petals and laurel branches in front of the triumphant Roman General entering the Gates of Rome]

I WAS ON THE TEAM!!!

Yeeeeeeeeeeee Haaaaaawwwwwwwwww!

Donate and help me get to Kaohsiung Taiwan!!!!

[7] The story intensifies ...
THUD--The Other Shoe Drops!

[cue the dramatic sinister foreboding music]

[Da-tah-dah-DUM] ...I get this email from the "officials;" the important bit reads:

Screen Bean - unhappy"...competitors will be responsible for purchasing their own plane ticket..."

*POOF* There go my Olympic Dream... ...shattered!!

WHY?

Screen Bean with hourglass and money running out of a 401KBecause I have been unemployed since April 2012.  I'm one of those "statistics" you hear about when they talk about the recession.

To make ends meet I have been drawing on my 401k retirement fund.

Which means, friends, neighbors, and generous backers... 

...that there ain't no extra money laying around for a trip to Taiwan! 

Here is the list of expenses related to the trip:

  • Fly to & from Dallas/Taipei (cheaper than direct to Kaohsiung City)
  • Train to & from Taipei/Kaohsiung City
  • Venue where the World DanceSport Games will be heldSeven nights of hotel (the hosts pay for 3; I pay for 4)
  • Food
  • Local transport (buses/taxis) in Kaohsiung City
  • SIx extra dance lessons between now and Sept -- I need more but I'm trying to keep the budget as low as possible.
  • Costume for the Street/Novelty (New dance--just for the Games)
  • Travel Insurance: covering lost bags, travel delays etc,
  • Medical insurance: This is required by organizers of the Games. Folks with jobs just show their Insurance Card.  However, since I'm unemployed, I have to purchase a short-term 30 day medical policy (like the ones you'd get from an employer). :-(
  • Spectator's Pass: Our Athlete's credentials only get us into our event.  To see the other events, we have to buy a ticket.

*POOF* No money=No go! *POOF* Dream Vanishes!

THEN... ...a friend told me about Indiegogo and here I am, begging for money!

[ Now would be a good time to hit that PLEDGE button! ]

Me Competing at the 2006 Gay Games in Chicago!Just so everyone knows, the Taiwanese organizers will reimburse me for the plane ticket, but NOT until I get to the Games in Sept. & show them my receipt

In other words, I have to pay for a trans-Pacific ticket out of my own pocket and I ain't got that kind of money just laying around!

...anywhere! I checked! (Though I did find $2.73 in the couch cushions.)

When I get reimbursed, I will use the refund to help me prepare for the Jan 2014 DanceSport Olympiad and tryout for the 2014 USA Team.

Your support will speed along on my journey to Taiwan.  Let's Go for Gold!!

Donate and help me get to Kaohsiung Taiwan!!!!

[8] The story climaxes ...
Why THIS event is so important to me:

I qualified for the Team in the (over 30) "age" division called "Senior"  (Couldn't they have called it something else?  UGH!)

Since winning my spot on this year's Team they have changed the rules and COMBINED the 18-29 age division with the over 30 division so...

Photo Used Courtesy of Moon Dance Studios

(Photo courtesy of Moon Dance Studios) Linus Backstrom [United Kingdom] -- An incredible Superstar Division Dancer and Multi-time World ChampionEVERYBODY from 18 to 80+ all compete against each other.  Which means I'm going up against awesome dancers half my age:  *SIGH*

There is no word yet on what is going to happen next year.  The Senior Division is still listed for the US qualifying event, but who knows if it will actually be used at the International Competitions next year which means:

...this may be my one and only chance to go to the "Games"

Every kid dreams of being an Olympian. 

Every adult becomes that kid again when they watch the Olympics. 

Not many people get the chance to find out what it feels like.

  • This is the FIRST US DanceSport Team to every compete Internationally!
  • This is the FIRST World DanceSport Games!
  • This event is a milepost on the way to the Olympics.
    • And, this event may be as close as I'll ever get to the Olympic Games!
      • I may not win, but I will dance my best and dance with passion!

This event is my chance to find out how an Olympian feels...

...IF I can raise the money with the generous support of backers like you!
Donate and help me get to Kaohsiung Taiwan!!!!

[ 5-6-7-8 DANCE! ] Summing it all up...
How I feel as I prepare for the Games:

Watching the 2012 Olympic Games in London on TV, I found myself unusually affected; I was literally moved to tears at times...

  • ...perhaps because I knew DanceSport was on its way to the Olympics;
  • ...perhaps because of the personal struggles I faced in 2012: lost my job, broke my wrist, fought depression, accident destroyed my truck;
  • ...perhaps because the Olympics have always represented the pinnacle of individual achievement?

One athlete stands out in my mind from London:  the Irish Gymnast Kieran Behan faced impossible hurdles, both physical and financial on his way to the Olympics.

The TV said that he would have to turn in the performance of his life at the Olympics to make the finals and if he did, his odds of a medal were very slim.

Kieran Behan (Photo used coutesy of Geoff Pugh Photography)Kieran Behan (Photo used courtesy of Geoff Pugh Photography)

You could see from watching Kieran in the prelims that he gave it everything he had. You could see it in his carriage, in how he moved. He left nothing on the sidelines.  He put it all out there; he performed with passion.  In that moment he was the epitome of an Olympic Athlete.

As a competitor, I have no illusions about where I rank against my competition; I'm sure Kieran had to have known his odds of winning, but he went anyway. He represented his country; he performed with style and grace and dedication. You can't help but admire someone who does that.  I know I do.

Check out this video of Kieran at the Closing Ceremonies!  Even though he did not make the finals, he is definitely enjoying his Olympic experience!!!

And THAT is how I feel as I approach these games.

My goal is to say: "I took part; I did my best"

And with your help, I can do it.

Thank you for your time; Thank you for your support.

See ya on the dance floor!

Donate and help me get to Kaohsiung Taiwan!!!!

===============

Some final bits of housekeeping:

Since you made it all the way down here to the bottom of the page, you get a reward...

No donation required, unless you really want to! *hint* *hint* *hint*

Here is a video from the 2013 Olympiad where I won my spot on the USA Team.  The dance is in the Smooth Category, and is called "Nothin' but the Music / Choreographed by Debbie McLaughlin"  I'm the dancer on the far right and I took 1st place in this dance.

 ===============

One final note:  To my wonderful friends who took the time to read and critique this page.  Yes, I agree, it is too long.  But I made it as short as possible.  Brevity just isn't in my nature. 

It is shorter than it was when I started, so I did listen to your advice and I did put the "Call to Action" points where you all suggested.   So thank you! 

On the bright side (for those folks who *don't* know me...  Uhmmm did I mention that "brevity is not in my nature?"  Oh, I did?  Then you know know for certain that this is the real me that is laid out here on this page.  If you really want some fun reading check out my blog.... funny it is... Short, well mostly not.

===============
All images used on this page and in my project video are (1) used under Creative Commons License (2) OR belong to me (3) OR are used by permission of the owner (4) OR fall under the fair use clause (e.g. the logos of the organizations). Documentation of the Creative Commons photos and "by permission" photos provided upon request. All links to videos on YouTube have met YouTube's posting TOS.

 

Find This Campaign On
$1,372USD
raised in 1 month
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$4,543 USD goal
Flexible Funding This campaign has ended and will receive all funds raised.
Campaign Closed
This campaign ended on July 31, 2013
Select a Perk
  • $1USD
    STARTER DIVISION

    Besides me smiling like I just won the lottery, everyone who makes a contribution of $1 or more will [1] be listed on a "Supporters Page" on my blog [2] receive an invitation to subscribe to my blog: 5678, Dancing my Way to a Healthy Me!

    1 claimed
    Estimated delivery: July 2013
  • $10USD
    NEWCOMER DIVISION

    Besides my eternal gratitude, you will: [1] be listed on a "Supporters Page" on my blog [2] and receive a Thank You Email and a Digital Photo of me taken at the Games holding a big sign: "Thank you for helping me Dance the Olympic Dream!"

    1 claimed
    Estimated delivery: October 2013
  • $25USD
    NOVICE DIVISION

    In addition to me swooning in delight, you will: [1] be listed on the "Supporters Page" [2] receive a Photo-Postcard" featuring a shot of me taken at the Games holding a big sign: "Thank you for helping me Dance the Olympic Dream!"

    6 out of 250 claimed
    Estimated delivery: October 2013
  • $50USD
    INTERMEDIATE DIVISION

    In addition to me doing a happy dance dance & making those circle things in the air, you will: [1] be listed on the Supporters Page [2] get a Thank You card [3] get a refrigerator magnet featuring a photo I take of the Games or of Kaohsiung City with the caption "Thank you for helping me Dance the Olympic Dream" [4] access to "Sponsors Only" section on my blog where I will post daily updates while in Taiwan; the posts will go public after the Games but as a backer, you get them 1st!

    5 out of 100 claimed
    Estimated delivery: October 2013
  • $60USD
    SHOWDANCE! -- Dance Bag Tags!

    In addition to me doing a happy dance dance and making those circle things in the air, you will: [1] listed on Supporters Page / Blog invite [2] A special design created by me -- See the pic in the gallery. PayPal users will get this ASAP. Credit card users will get it after the campaign ends. [3] access to "Sponsors Only" section on my blog where I will post daily updates while in Taiwan; the posts will go public after the Games but as a backer, you get them 1st!

    1 out of 10 claimed
    Estimated delivery: October 2013
  • $150USD
    ADVANCED DIVISION

    I'll go "Squeeeeeeeeeeeee!" and you will: [1] be listed on the "Supporters Page" with a website link [2] get a Thank You card [3] get a Signed Photo of me taken at the Games holding a big sign, personalized with your name or company name/logo reading: "Thank You ____ for making my Olympic Dream come true!" and [4] access to "Sponsors Only" section on my blog where I will post Daily Updates while in Taiwan; the posts will go public after the Games but as a backer, you get them 1st!

    3 claimed
    Estimated delivery: October 2013
  • $250USD
    CROWN DIVISION

    In addition to me giggling like a 13 year old girl who just met Justin Bieber, you will: [1-4] receive everything from the ADV DIVISION [5] an image/logo (200x150px) will be added to your link on the Supporters Page, and [6] you will receive a video from me teaching one line dance of your choice. (Beg. through Int. level dance)

    0 claimed
    Estimated delivery: October 2013
  • $500USD
    SUPERSTARS DIVISION

    After I have recovered from an attack of the vapors, you will: [1-4] receive everything from the ADV DIVISION [5] an image/logo (400x300px) will be added to your link on the Supporters Page, and [6] you will receive a video from me teaching TWO line dances of your choice. (Beg. thru Adv. level dance)

    0 claimed
    Estimated delivery: October 2013
  • $750USD
    PRO DIVISION

    I'll have your children. Ok, ok, that was a joke, but I bet you laughed. You will get [1-4] everything from the ADV DIV. [5] an image/logo (600x450px) added to your Sponsors Page Link [6] a video teach of a line dance (Beg. thru Adv. level dance) and [7] a 1hr Dance Lesson or 1 video critique--which one, depends on logistics and your preference. The critique is ideal for distant competitive dancers needing help. You can give this reward as a gift. Have questions? Just contact me.

    0 claimed
  • $1,500USD
    BRONZE MEDALIST I

    After the paramedics revive me, I will: [1] wear a Sponsor Patch [5"x5"] on my Waltz costume @ the Games [2] write a blog post about you with social network promotion [3] list you on Supporters Page w/link & a 600x450px image [4] do 1 video line dance teach [5] do a 1 hr lesson or video critique [6-7] send a digital & print photo of me in costume with your logo [8] access to "Sponsors Only" section on my blog where I will post Daily Updates while in Taiwan

    0 out of 1 claimed
    Estimated delivery: October 2013
  • $1,500USD
    BRONZE MEDALIST II

    After I scare the cat by yelling, I will: [1] wear a Sponsor Patch [5"x5"] on my Funky costume @ the Games [2] write a blog post about you with social network promotion [3] list you on Supporters Page w/link and a 600x400px image [4] do 1 video line dance teach [5] do a 1 hr lesson or video critique [6-7] send a digital and print photo of me in costume with your logo [8] access to "Sponsors Only" section on my blog where I will post Daily Updates while in Taiwan

    0 out of 1 claimed
    Estimated delivery: October 2013
  • $4,500USD
    SILVER MEDALIST

    You are truly a lover of dance and sport! After I finish singing "Happy Days are here again!" You will: [1-8] receive all 8 items from the "Bronze Medalist II" level, with one change: the Sponsor Patch will be worn during the three dance flight consisting of the Pulse, the Cuban, and the Smooth; and [9] I will do one Speaking Engagement and/or one Showcase Performance Dance inside the US or Canada (Must be scheduled during the period: Oct 2013-Dec 2014)

    0 out of 1 claimed
    Estimated delivery: October 2013
  • $10,000USD
    GOLD MEDALIST I

    OMG! Marry me! In complete seriousness, Thank you from the depths of my being. You get: [1-8] everything from Bronze Level with 1 change-the Sponsor Patch will be worn: 2014 UCWDC Competition year on my Couples Costumes (inc ProAm and ProPro) @ UCWDC and ACDA events [9] a 450x275px ad above-the-fold on my blog 2014 UC Year [10] a Speaking Appearance and/or 1 Performance Dance-email for details [11] Magnet from Int. Div AND your choice of mug, stein etc featuring DanceSport Game

    0 out of 1 claimed
    Estimated delivery: January 2014
  • $10,000USD
    GOLD MEDALIST II

    OMG! Marry me! In complete seriousness, Thank you from the depths of my being. You get: [1-8] everything from Bronze Level with 1 change-the Sponsor Patch will be worn: 2014 UCWDC Competition year on my Line Dance Costumes (except Street/Funky) @ UCWDC and ACDA events [9] a 450x275px ad above-the-fold on my blog 2014 UC Year [10] a Speaking Appearance and/or 1 Performance Dance-email for details [11] Magnet from Int. Div AND your choice of mug, stein etc featuring DanceSport Games De

    0 out of 1 claimed
    Estimated delivery: January 2014
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