For Mary Tabor, the ninth time is the charm.
The 18-year-old North Augusta High School senior has participated in the annual North Augusta Idol since it began nine years ago.
On March 19, she won the talent show, becoming the first dancer to win since the show began. Vocalists have been winners the previous years.
Dancing to A Woman’s Work by Maxwell in front of the audience at North Augusta High School, Tabor dedicated the piece to those who have been affected by cancer and their families.
“It’s encouraging women to be strong and not to give up,” she said. “That’s what I tried to show through my dance.”
She wanted the audience and the judges to be able to feel the dance.
“I danced with my heart,” she said.
Tabor was also the recipient of the inaugural Mim Woodring Award for Excellence.
“We miss (Mim Woodring) because she directed it for the first eight years. She was such a presence in the arts council and the community,” said John Bigger, president of the North Augusta Cultural Arts Council which hosts the annual event. “We learned from her how to run a show. We wanted to honor her.”
Tabor was chosen for the award for her dedication to her art form.
“Here’s a dancer who’s spending a lot of time and effort and we felt she deserved it,” he said.
Receiving the award meant a lot, said Tabor.
“After every show, I would get a letter from Mim with her thanking me and this will the first year that I won’t be getting one,” she said. “I was talking to my mom and was saying that it’s going to crush me a little bit because it’ll be the first time she’s not in it with me.”