GDI Heritage Ball 2017 Recap

Royce Banks, Kazemde, and Charnice Simmons (Photo credit:

Another incredible Heritage Ball weekend is in the books, and what a memorable weekend it was. ChiStepper missed the Thursday and Friday events for the first time ever, but we were front and center for the Main Event, All Star Challenge, and the Brunch. From the online reports, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday morning included some very fun and insightful occasions.  The welcome event Thursday along with the Ellery’s set were jam packed. The Steppers forum hosted by Soy Soy also received rave reviews, as did Family Feud hosted by Cee of the Majestic Gents.

The were a number of dance workshops from a ton of great instructors who attended and you could spot privates taking place all day as you descended down the elevator. Speaking of the elevator, did you all see the cool GDI Banners on the glass as they climbed up to the 42nd floor? Talk about a 1st class event.

The main event hosted thousands of elegantly dressed Steppers from across the nation happily greeting each other, live streaming, and snapping photos. There was a cool drone flying around overhead grabbing shots from a bird’s eye view. All of those dancers generated quite a bit of heat, and Steppers were praying the drone hovered over them for quick cool off.

Terry Harris sang a few hits from his catalog like “Two Can Play That Game,” along with some hits from The O’Jays and Gerald Levert. That brother has an incredible voice and he might be one of Eddie’s long lost sons. The members of GDI were presented with their families, followed by Lifetime Achievement Awards being given to the much deserving Charnice Simmons and Royce Banks. Digital media maven Tanya Harris also received an Appreciation Award. The excitement and surprise on their faces was a joy to watch. This was followed by the Steppers Roll Call, which Chicago won for the umpteen time. I will admit that Detroit, Houston, Atlanta, Minneapolis, and Oakland represented extremely well for themselves.

Terry Harris singing for the Heritage Ball crowd (Photo credit:

On Sunday morning the extremely popular Steppers All Star Challenge hosted by and Ohh So Smooth radio created a number of incredible  moments, including Ed Donaldson and Jannice Robertson showing out in the Catch-A-Beat category, Drew Alexander and Ericka Little stunning the crowd in the Armed and Dangerous category, Amanda Anderson spinning 51 times consecutively in the Spinning Top category, and Ed Donaldson and Charnice Simmons doing an incredible job dancing inside the box in the Stay In Your Lane category.

This was followed by a delicious brunch of chicken and grits and more dancing. The DJ’s for the weekend were all incredible. I saw Mellow Khris, DJ Calvin, Shorty Smooth, DJ Cross, Devan Powe, DJ Black Cool, and Jon Pierre. Media personalities Lamont Watts (, Jeff Clark (, Kevin Nevels, DJ Dan, and Limo G of WZON Radio, Talking with Tika, Sonji (The 8 Count Life) and Lady Sings The News were all in the building keeping the Steppin nation up to date on the latest happenings  for the weekend. ChiStepper even got a jug of tea from Tika, so how’s that for VIP?!

There’s was so much happening we couldn’t possibly catch it all, but there are tons and tons of videos and live streams on Facebook. Some of our favorites shots from the weekend are featured below. Check out ChiStepper’s Instagram @chisteppers and our Facebook page @chistepper for more images and updates.



  • T Pratt

    Holding it down for the Steppin community since 2006.


You May Also Like

2015 WLSC Review, Winners, & Prize Money

This Weekend Steppers from across the nation converged on Chicago for the 25th Anniversary ...

Deja Vu Celebrates Maddy B’s Birthday

Déjà vu celebrated line dancing diva and everybody’s favorite girl, Maddy B’s birthday on ...

Steppin With The Brothers at The Dorchester

Steppin With The Brothers hosted their fall Steppers set last night at The Dorchester. ...

Radio Legend Herb Kent Passes at 88

Legendary radio host Herb Kent passed Saturday night at 88 year’s old. The Hall ...

Where Are All Of The Steppin Masters?

This year marks the 25th Anniversary of the World’s Largest Steppers Contest and also ...