PORTLAND — In it’s inaugural season, Dancing With the Dentists exceeded all expectations in raising well over $40,000 for Portland’s Healthcare for the Homeless Dental Clinic and Maine Dental LifeLine. Conceived by Dr. Glen Knock and patterned after the wildly popular “Dancing With the Stars,” local dentists were paired with professional ballroom dance instructors to put on a dazzling display of footwork and fun. On November 16, over 400 people attended and cheered the contestants on at the Italian Heritage Center in Portland. Host Shannon Moss, DJ Mike Violette, and judges Governor John Baldacci, physician and author Dr. Christiane Northrup, and radio personality Ken Altshuler helped make the program one to remember.
Each contestant danced either a ballroom or Latin dance and the audience and judges voted for who they thought was the best. None had ever done ballroom dancing before September. A wonderful twist was that the dancers were all dentists married to dentists and the vote was tallied for the best couple. There was even a family angle with Dr. Joseph Penna and his wife, Maine Dental Association President Dr. Demi Kouzounas, competing against their daughter and son-in-law, Drs. Nichol Penna and Doug Delli Colli! Also dancing were the overall winners, Dr. Jenny Fultz, the dentist at the Healthcare for the Homeless Dental Clinic, with her husband Dr. Brian Brunacini. Drs. Killian and Tarryn MacCarthy rounded out the four couples.
The generosity of Northeast Delta Dental and Tom’s of Maine helped underwrite the program, with Delta’s donation earmarked for Dental LifeLine. Many other donations and ticket sales helped make this first ever Dancing With the Dentists a huge success. Everyone is looking forward to next November and the second season of Dancing With the Dentists!