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01/09/2012 - Welcome to the home of Social Lights. Read new online reports with photos each week and their reprise in the monthly print edition mailed to homes in Birmingham-Bloomfield at the start of each month. If you are not receiving the print edition by mail, you can order a subscription in the upper right index at the top of this page (subscriptions). If you want e-mail notification of when new Social Lights columns are posted to this site each Monday, sign up in the Newsletter Sign Up box at the lower right side of this home page.

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Detroit Historical Society's Dancing with the Stars

We doubt Eastern Market's Shed #3 was ever more glamorous than the night 500 supporters of the Detroit Historical Society trekked there for the DHS annual ball. Since 2008 it has featured a popular Dancing with Detroit's Stars competition. For the first time, thanks to dance advocate / philanthropist Maggie Allesee's suggestion, in addition to a winner being decided by the number of dollars he/she raised in DHS donations, another winner was decided by a panel of judges. Their task was far from simple but decide they did and Sharon Madison Polk won their nod for Best Performance. Amateur dance competitor Charlene Proctor and Judie Goodman had enthusiastic fan clubs in attendance but the dancer who garnered the most dollars was Nedda Shayota. (See the photo gallery for pictures of all the dancers.) The voting raised nearly $50,000, up from $19,000 the first year when Nancy Smith was the winner. Under the chairmanship of Lauren Rakolta and Karla Hall the elegant party netted $225,000.

2011 Kidney Ball

Some 700 guests attended the 2011 Annual Kidney Ball at the MGM Grand. The festive gala, with its Motown Magic theme, always attracts lots of people because, unfortunately, lots of people know someone who is affected by kidney disease. For example, the event co-chair Myra Moreland, who was the surprise recipient of the Cindy Hoglund Shannon award for her commitment to the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan's mission. Moreland was Shannon's Birmingham neighbor when their children, Drew Shannon and Laynie Moreland, were young and they became fast friends. Drew's kidney disease, and subsequent transplant, drew both moms into the NKFM community. "This really means a lot to me," admitted Moreland when she accepted the award with her daughter at her side. Other highlights of the soiree included the video spotlighting the NKFM camp for kids with kidney disease, auctions and dancing to the Jerry Ross band. The party raised more than $500,000. This will help NKFM improve the quality of life for those living with kidney disease. The need for services is dramatized by this fact - Michigan residents awaiting a kidney transplant number 2,379. This compares to the next largest category - 347 awaiting a liver transplant.

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