Tracy Farriba and Michael Clark were scheduled to dance together as Team Two, with Farriba representing Gordon Hospital and Michael Clark representing Calhoun City Schools. Weeks into rehearsals and convinced she was channeling Shawn Johnson--season Eight’s winner and a 17 year old Olympic gymnast--Farriba learned the hard way that she was neither 17 years old nor a gymnast when she landed badly coming out of a toss and fractured the head of her femur. Farriba will recover fully but that one bad landing put her out of the contest and on the sidelines, where she will cheer on her replacement. Farriba is the first contestant to be sidelined by an injury.
Farriba’s partner Michael Clark thought he was the weakest link when his practice sessions sent him to the chiropractor several times, but with Farriba down for the count, he needed a partner and he needed one quick. Not only did his daughter Katie Clark rush to his defense, but now her father may actually see some payback from the years of dance training he financed.
Katie Clark is a 2008 graduate of the University of Georgia, where she majored in Speech Communication. She is employed with Calhoun City Schools and works in the Special Education department of Calhoun Primary. She serves as the Assistant Varsity Lady Jackets soccer coach. She also serves as Assistant Varsity Lady Jackets volleyball coach and was named the 2012 Region Assistant Coach of the Year. She is looking forward to dancing with her father and making another wonderful memory to share with him.
Michael Clark is a legend in his own right, having served as Calhoun High School’s band director for many years, where he and his students regularly command the field. He is married to Charmaine “Charlie” Clark, who is employed with Gordon County Department of Family and Child Services. He and Charlie have three children: Katie, Jonathan and Brandon. Jonathan is a student at Dalton State and Brandon attends Calhoun High School. The Clark family attends First Presbyterian Church.
The Clarks will dance together to Glenn Miller’s “In the Mood”, followed by “Land of 1000 Dances” and wrapping up with a little hip-hop to “Tootsie Roll”. Rumor has it that Michael Clark has made room in the routine for a little taste of his own beloved jazz.
Mohawk Presents Calhoun’s Dancing with the Stars is a joint fundraiser, with all profits benefiting the GEM Theatre and United Way of Gordon County. Each of the eight teams is competing in two capacities: as fundraisers and as dancers. Their fundraising efforts are limited only by their imaginations.
Team supporters may make online donations at www.gordoncountyunitedway.org until right before the finale. Online donors must make a minimum pledge of $5.00, with Visa, MasterCard and Discover accepted. Those wishing to make personal donations may do so by offering their payments to United Way Director Vickie Spence at her office in the Calhoun Depot. Credit cards, cash and checks are accepted at that location. Supporters may also present their donations directly to their favored team. Donations will be collected during the Friday and Saturday shows.