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Video: Ballroom dancing and plenty of laughs at Catch-A-Star Luncheon

GIANNA VOLPE PHOTO |  Sophie Pickerell (left) and Landon Doroski entertained with their ballroom dancing Thursday at the 17th annual Catch-A-Star Luncheon. Joanne Sherman (right) was this year’s speaker.

When the Daughters of Israel saw that Greenport’s Landon Doroski would be instructing free ballroom dancing at Mitchell Park every Monday night in July, the sisterhood group of Congregation Tifereth Israel saw a golden opportunity for entertainment at its 17th annual Catch-A-Star Luncheon.

Mr. Doroski, 19, received the group’s literary scholarship last year, but was unable to attend the luncheon because he was abroad in Korea. He made up for his absence by performing several ballroom dances at Thursday’s event at Soundview Restaurant with 15 year-old Sophie Pickerell of Southold.

“I know Landon from the ROTC program,” Ms. Pickerell said. “He taught us some dances for our military ball in March at Vineyard Caterers, so I’m helping him do an exhibition of his ballroom dancing to get people to go to his free classes at Mitchell Park.”

People packed the restaurant, including members of the Congregation Tifereth Israel Synagogue in Greenport, who sat with raffle tickets as they listened to the event’s presenters and enjoyed a lunch of either chicken and snow peas or vegetarian pasta.

Presenters included Greenport High School senior Zoe Vayer, this year’s literary scholarship winner, who read an essay about her spiritual journey, beginning as a non-believer and ending with a religious epiphany that took place on top of Mount Sinai.

“We’ve celebrated artists and writers through the years,” host Paula Shengold said of the event. “We’ve had Bonnie Grice, Ed German, Larry Levine, Bob Berks, Peg Murray, just about all the artists and writers of the North Fork, talk at our annual luncheon. They’ve really been generous with their time.”

This year’s speaker was humor columnist for the Shelter Island Reporter, Joanne Sherman, who shared three of her pieces with the crowd, as well as a nightmare she had in nights leading up to the event about the dining room being filled with baby goats.

Watch here as Ms. Sherman shares one of her laugh-out-loud columns with the crowd about her grand-children’s reaction to her trip to Alaska last year.

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