Victoria dance pair earns double gold

James Bay couple win two categories at U.S. ballroom competition

David Spence and Denise Riley-Spence gracefully go through a dance routine at a recent competition. The couple won two gold at a ballroom event in California last month.

David Spence and Denise Riley-Spence first watched ballroom dancing while on a cruise five years ago. They were hooked, but soon discovered recreational social dancing didn’t satisfy.

“We saw competitive dancers and we said ‘Wow, that’s what we want to do,’” said Riley-Spence. “We don’t do anything half-assed.”

The couple started seriously training, five days a week. A coach from Vancouver teaches them once every three weeks.

All that work paid off big time on Feb. 4.

The couple won two gold medals at the Southwest Dancesport Championships at Laguna Beach, Calif. in two age categories: 35-plus and 45-plus. They danced the waltz, tango, fox trot and quick step.

For Americans, winners of the regional championship gain entry into the national competition.

Canadians, however, get “nothing,” Riley-Spence said, laughing.

Victorians will get a chance to watch their winning couple compete at the annual Dance Pacifica Ball, held June 9.

Riley-Spence hopes to ignite some interest in the local competition.

“Sometimes we’ll compete at Dance Pacifica and there might be 75 people in the audience. You dance differently when there’s more people cheering you on. When it’s so poorly attended, as dancers, it doesn’t give us that edge.”

For more information on the upcoming competition, visit www.dancepacifica.org.

rholmen@vicnews.com

Just Posted

Ancient microbes discovered off the Juan de Fuca Ridge potentially offers glimpse into alien life

The marine bacteria is dependent on hydrogen, a compound present almost everywhere

Saanich rental project wins silver by going ‘green’

The Verve rental housing project stands at the corner of Boleskine Road and Whittier Avenue

Volunteers needed for annual Mother’s Day walk

Breast Cancer Society of Canada hosts annual Mother’s Day event

Sidney Lions dish $4,000 to help build on growing trishaw bike charity

Cycling Without Age Society draws attention as far off as Washington

Sign forbidding rabbit drop-offs gets stuffed bunnies instead

Residents seemingly undeterred by strict wording this Easter

WATCH: Movie star and PACE alum Calum Worthy talks musical theatre and his career

“American Vandal” and “Austin and Ally” actor has been returning to the program for over 20 years

POLL: How often does your family use BC Ferries?

Navigating the lineups for BC Ferries is a way of life for… Continue reading

Crime Stoppers most wanted for Greater Victoria for the week of April 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

B.C. fire department rescues kittens

Enderby homeowner not aware kittens in wood pile near garbage pile fire that got out of hand

QUIZ: How much do you know about Easter?

Take this short quiz and put your knowledge to the test

B.C. VIEWS: NDP’s lawyer show is turning into a horror movie

Court actions pile up over pipelines, car insurance, care aides

Global Affairs warns Canadians in Sri Lanka there could be more attacks

A series of bomb blasts killed at least 207 people and injured hundreds more

Waste not: Kootenay brewery leftovers feed the local food chain

Spent grains from the Trail Beer Refinery are donated to local farmers and growers, none go to waste

Most Read