True Sisters

True Sisters

They met as strangers 13 years ago. Now, they are sisters.

Leslie Parker has been involved with BBBS for 13 years. Leslie says, “I joined the program because a friend of mine was a BBBS employee and she encouraged me to get involved.” After joining, she was matched with Kathlene, who was 10 years old. They have been sisters ever since.

More than a Mentor

More than a Mentor

When Haidyn met Rachel for the first time, she says, “I was going through a tomboy phase and Rachel brought out a personality in me that I didn’t know existed.” Haidyn is happy to have someone to talk to and hang out with. Before she was matched with Rachel, she only had her brother to hang out with, now she has a friend, mentor and Big Sister! She added, “Rachel has a sweet personality and a kind heart. I love her!”

The simple power of clean pajamas

The simple power of clean pajamas

One of my very favorite simple pleasures is climbing into bed with clean sheets. It's something I savor each Saturday night, after we've done the weekly cleaning, a tradition I've carried into my family from my childhood. Something I thought all families did. But this week, I have a whole new thought about pajamas and climbing into fresh sheets after talking to Clark, our copy repair man. 

Laura Lauer | An Interview

Laura Lauer | An Interview

A Moment With Laura

Our Enrollment and Match Support Coodinator

 
Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.
— George Bernard Shaw
Laura at Pikes Peak. 

Laura at Pikes Peak. 

 

What made you want to work with BBBS?

When I was a graduate assistant, I worked in youth & family programs. I absolutely loved my experience and I missed it. I wanted to move back toward working in that area. I was lucky that the job position opened up when I needed it! 

 

What is your favorite part of your job as a Program Coordinator?

I love many aspects of my job. My favorite things are interviewing children, volunteers, and matching them. Regardless of how many times I ask the same questions, I constantly get new answers from the children that are always entertaining.

I love getting to know the volunteers. The type of people that come into the program wanting to volunteer to be Bigs are absolutely incredible. I am honored that they share their life story with me and I get to learn from them.

After that, I truly enjoy the Big and Little meeting each other for the first time. When they are matched, they are both excited to meet each other and a little shy. It is wonderful to see them both grow together in such a short period of time. 

 

Can you talk about a mentor that you had growing up?

I had many mentors growing up that invested their time and effort and impacted me in different ways. One of my early mentors was a middle school teacher named Mrs. M. She was also my track and cross country coach. She was always a strong female role model that was positive and encouraging during my middle school and high school years.

About a year ago, I wrote her a letter about how much I admired her character and looked up to her growing up. She wrote a letter back. She has two twin girls and she wrote that she hopes they grow up to be like me.

That statement has had a profound impact on my outlook for the future and the way I live my life. I want those girls to have amazing opportunities, a fulfilling life, and reach their full potential. I want the absolute best for them. I don't want them to miss out on a second of having a life that they love and achieving their dreams. Not only did Mrs. M have a positive impact on my life, but her daughters have too. I want to live as a role model that empowers the girls to be anything they want to be and live a life that they love. 


Laura is a passionate employee that cares a lot for other people. Her work in the organization is vital to the success of Big Brothers Big Sisters' mission: changing the lives for the better, forever. We are lucky to have her brilliant mind on our team. Thank you so much, Laura!

 

Pat & Susan | Party Train

Pat & Susan | Party Train

Pat Bowen describes his family as: “My best half Maggie, wife of 28 years, son Tyler, Greatest Daughter-in-Law in the World Tara and Tatum, our one and only Granddaughter.” Pat’s spent 8 years as the Internet Sales Manager at Stoops Automotive Group. Pat says Muncie and the surrounding area is a great place to work.

In addition to being his dancing partner today, Pat Bowen’s favorite sister, Susan Brumley is the proud parent of four young children alongside her husband Joel. When Susan is not teasing her older brother, she works as a Personal Wardrobe Consultant at Simply Classic.

Watch as this dynamic duo takes the stage!

Aaron & Stephanie | Wanna Be Your Man

Aaron & Stephanie | Wanna Be Your Man

Aaron and Stephanie Fisher were excited to be involved in Dance for Kids’ Sake, and to help support Big Brothers Big Sisters of Delaware County. The Fishers are Muncie natives celebrating their 20th wedding anniversary this year.

Aaron is a UPS driver, drummer, and music enthusiast. Stephanie is a Ball State grad who works at SpinWeb in Indianapolis and serves on the board of local nonprofit The Facing Project. They have two young daughters, Madeline and Lucy, along with lots of family and friends in town rooting them on!

What a cute couple!

Watch as Aaron & Steph take the stage!

May Lou & Nik | Word Crimes

Nik Seiber and Mary Lou Vercellotti moved to Indiana four years ago when Mary Lou accepted a faculty position at Ball State University.  She teaches courses in linguistics and English to speakers of other languages.

Nik is a designer with a degree in landscape architecture and is currently taking a furniture design course at Ball State. He plays the piano and digeridoo, and he recently picked up the melodica. They enjoy the music of Weird Al because of his word play and his musical talent on the accordion.

These two could teach you a thing or two.  Check our Mary Lou & Nik!

 

Kendra & Chad | All that Jazz

Kendra & Chad | All that Jazz


Friends Kendra Mann and Chad Ragan were happy to support BBBS by slipping on their dancing shoes. Kendra has been teaching Communication courses at BSU for six years. When not lesson-planning or teaching, Kendra’s favorite pastime is joining husband Brian to play with their one-year-old son, Owen.

After finishing graduate school, Chad began work with Parlour Salon on the preservation of the historic Alva Kitselman Mansion at Hazelwood Estates. When he isn’t rehearsing with Kendra, he is binge watching Barefoot Contessa, looking for any excuse to avoid working out, or spending hours at Target buying things he doesn’t need.

These two sure know how to get into character.

Check out Kendra and Chad with All that Jazz!

 

 

The Jeffers | Lucky We Can't Stop this Feeling

The Jeffers | Lucky We Can't Stop this Feeling

There is no question that the Jeffers won over the crowd this year at Dance for Kids’ Sake. We are excited to share with you their story and dance from that evening.

Steve and Vicki Jeffers met at Ball State as members of the University Singers. Vicki claims her attraction to Steve began because she got to, “stand behind Steve and watch him wiggle his buns.” They have been married for 42 years.

Steve is recently retired and Vicki has spent 40 years as a devoted teacher and choir director, and coordinated the Muncie Community Christmas Sing for 20 years.  The Jeffers have 3 children and 6 grandchildren with the 7th on the way.  Many thanks to all who helped reach our fundraising goal, especially the Brannons of Mieneke Car Care.

 

Juan & Casey | West Side Story

Juan & Casey | West Side Story


Juan E Toro is a licensed Zumba® and Zumba Toning® Instructor, a retired Lieutenant Colonel, United States Army (retired after 27 years of service), disabled veteran, and owner of Don Juan Fitness, LLC.  Juan is the proud father of 4 children and grandfather to 5.

Casey Langendorfer is a health and PE teacher at Highland Middle School. You can usually find her playing soccer in the DCFC league #champions, doing Crossfit at the Arsenal, reading, teaching Zumba®, or going on camping trips with husband Pat. A native New Yorker, Casey also loves the Yankees, Jets, and Rangers and misses delis and bagels.

Check out their diverse moves!

 

 

Audrey & Kyle | Got to Give it Up

Audrey & Kyle | Got to Give it Up

Audrey Clevenger is a Lead Strategy Analyst at Navient where she has worked for 10 years. She enjoys volunteering for Habitat for Humanity, Junior Achievement and Second Harvest. Husband Kyle Clevenger is a Noise and Vibration Engineering Technician at Progress Rail Manufacturing.

Most of the Clevenger’s time is spent with their two beautiful daughters and dogs, Pookie and Rosie. When not with his girls, Kyle can be found riding his Triumph motorcycle on and off road and listening to technical metal or NPR. When the kids are asleep Audrey loves to read and/or watch HBO.

Their GROOVY moves are a must-see!

 

The Oldfields | Singin' in the Rain

The Oldfields | Singin' in the Rain

The Oldfields are no strangers to the stage. Jessica spent her youth in various shows then onto Ball State Singers. Codi devotes his free time to writing songs for his band, Oldfield and the New Birds, where Jessica sings backup.

During the daytime, Codi is a lead operator works at Tomken Tool and Engineering while Jessica is a stay at home mom, who sews for her someday Etsy shop. They have 3 children, Jasper, Dovie and Eisley.

Check out their STYLE and RHYTHM!

Dance for Kids' Sake 2017 Highlights

Dance for Kids' Sake 2017 Highlights

Eight couples compete to raise money and awareness for local youth. More than $28,500 was raised on April 22, 2017 to support one-to-one youth mentoring for Big Brothers Big Sisters. Don't miss a minute of the highlight reel.

DFKS Talk | The Results

DFKS Talk | The Results

Couple Vicki (far left) and Steve (far right) Jeffers, the winners of three separate awards: The Audience Choice award, The Judges' Choice award, and the Best Costume award. They danced to "Lucky We Can't Stop the Feeling." (Source: Shoot For Good Muncie)

Couple Vicki (far left) and Steve (far right) Jeffers, the winners of three separate awards: The Audience Choice award, The Judges' Choice award, and the Best Costume award. They danced to "Lucky We Can't Stop the Feeling." (Source: Shoot For Good Muncie)

A huge success for the 7th annual Dance For Kids Sake event on April 22nd! Our couples shredded the dance floor with the help of their wonderful choreographers. Their hard work (as well as the hard work of our donors) the final total reached $28,845, surpassing our initial goal by a landslide!

The energy and excitement on the dancefloor was contagious as the dancers moved across the dancefloor. Everyone was mesmerized by the performances of the couples, and we could all only admire the dedication and time each group put into these routines. Each dancer came with their best moves, and we can’t help but feel grateful for their participation.

Laura Lauer, the Enrollment and Match Support Coordinator, says, “Dance For Kids Sake is always a fun event! The dancers at the event this year were impressive. We are grateful for all the funds and support received to continue helping the children and volunteers grow in our community.” And boy is she right! We are so thankful, both for their work, and their entertainment!

Mary Lou Vercelloti and Nik Seiber won “Best Supporting Actor and Actress” for raising the most money, reaching record heights of over $10,000. They danced energetically to Weird Al’s “Word Games,” and really gave the audience a show!

The “Best Director” award was won by Cole Academy choreographer, Tori Cashman, and her couple, Chad Ragan and Kendra Mann. They performed a jaw-dropping routine for the Chicago musical number, “All That Jazz”. The shock factor was one for the books!

Steve and Vicki Jeffers won both the Judges’ and Audience Choice awards with their performance, as well as the Best Costume award.  Their engaging performance of “Lucky We Can’t Stop This Feeling” from the Trolls movie featured a shocking wardrobe change which brought down the house! Their routine was amazing!

We want to thank all of the dancers and choreographers for their performances. The hard work and dedication showed on the dance floor. The passion and excitement each couple displayed on the dance floor was spectacular, and Big Brother Big Sisters is so grateful to all the time spent on these donations and routines. With their work, we are able to carry their mission forward and change lives for the better, forever.

Be entertained by our dancers

Brother and Sister team Pat Bowen and Susan Brumley speak about their prior dance experience.

You'll want to be sure to grab a ticket TODAY before prices go up at the door on the day of the event! See you at Northside Middle School on Saturday April 22, 2017. Red Carpet begins at 6:30pm!

Click this link for ticket information!

Little Stars of the Show!

These are our Little stars that are a Big deal! Your time and money helps make a Big difference in the lives of our children, our volunteers, and our community. Thank you for your support! 

Countdown to DFKS | 2 Days Away

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Have you forgot to buy your tickets? Get them here!!

Book your hair appointments, and get those shoes shined. It’s one week away from the biggest night of the year! Dance For Kids Sake is 2 days away! Come to this event, and see our dancers tear up the dance floor!

Don’t forget to check out the dancer’s pages and help them win an award!

We can’t wait to see you there!

A Little DIY Craft | An Easy Easter Egg Wreath

Bigs, not sure what you want to do with your Littles? Parents, want to create something with your kiddos? This is a cheap, fun activity, perfect for everyone! You can add more steps, take a few off, or keep it just the way it is! 

This Easy Easter Egg Wreath is easy to make, and very cheap to recreate. All you need is:

Source: Pinterest

Source: Pinterest

Newspaper/Trash bag/Paper Towels (To make clean up easier!)

Plastic Easter Eggs

A Wreath Frame

Hot Glue Gun

Hot Glue Sticks

Optional: Pipe Cleaners/Ribbon

Optional: Glitter/Sequins/Paint/Elmer’s Glue

So, here’s what you do!

  1. Place a newspaper or trash bag flat across a flat surface to make clean up a bit easier. Take the time to plug in your hot glue gun and allow it to warm up before you get started. (Safety tip: Make sure no one tries to touch the tip of the gun so they don’t burn their fingers.)
  2. Set out the materials, so they’re all ready to go.
  3. Choose the colors of eggs and pipe cleaners/ribbon you want to go on the reef
    • Optional: For an added personal touch, you can have the kids use glitter, sequins, and paint to decorate the eggs before placing them on the reef.
  4. Place a dot of hot glue to the frame, and place an egg directly on the dot, pushing it to the frame. Continue this all around the frame.
    • Optional: Tie the pipe cleaners and/or ribbons between the eggs to give it a more polished look.
  5. Hang up your lovely wreath for the whole world to see!

Have a great time recreating the craft. Make sure to like this post, and tag Big Brothers Big Sisters of Delaware County on Facebook and use the hashtag below to show us your creation! We can’t wait to see what you make!

(Source | The Web | For more Inspiration | Pinterest)

 

Countdown to DFKS | 12 days away!

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Have you forgot to buy your tickets? Get them here!!

The biggest event of the year, Dance For Kids Sake, is only 12 days away! April 22nd is coming fast, and we want to see you there! Dust off those old dancing shoes, and get ready for the night of your life! Northside Middle School at 7pm is where you want to be!

Come and see the dancers give great performances. You don’t want to miss this.

21 Days Away | Countdown to DFKS

21 DAYS AWAY FROM DANCE FOR KIDS SAKE!

Everybody is buying tickets... Have you bought yours? Buy them here!!

We are so excited for our Dance For Kids Sake event! Saturday, April 22nd is just around the corner. Prep those tuxedos, and open up that old garment bag at the back of your closet. You won't want to miss this glamorous night of fun at Northside Middle School at 7pm. 

Everything is coming together, and we can't wait to see what will come out of this amazing night.

Our dancers and choreographers are working hard to give everyone a great night.