LEWISTON — His feet said River Dance, his arms said The Robot, and for a few minutes, before the ice was properly broken and the music pumped up, 7-year-old Patrick Myers owned the dance floor.
Joining in a song later, mom Kristina Myers of Auburn kept pace beside him.
“His father always takes his sister to the father-daughter ball,” she said. Patrick once told that dance’s organizers they should have a mother-son dance “‘because you could make a lot of money,’” his mother said.
She said was excited when he saw the ad for the first Mother-Son Ball, a benefit dance Saturday put on by a team of Central Maine Medical Center oncology nurses and their friends and families to raise money for the Dempsey Challenge. Patrick picked out his own outfit, down to the bow tie.
Katie Aguilar, a nurse and team captain of the M1 Chemo Commandos, said the dance put them over their goal of raising $4,000 for the challenge, which benefits the Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope and Healing at CMMC. Dozens of businesses donated prizes for raffles and Shriners donated the Kora Shrine Temple for the evening. More than 200 mothers and sons turned out.
“We actually have patients here with their children,” Aguilar said.
Nurse Trudy Pontbriand of Sabattus said she came up with the idea because of the popularity of the local father-daughter dance.
“We just want it to be bigger and better every year,” she said.
While the music pulsed in the background, Charlotte Morin of Lewiston twirled away with a twin on each hand. She brought 8-year-old sons Jacob and Zachary.
“I sent my money in right away,” Morin said. “This is our first date.”
Missy Bisson of Lewiston made a night of it with her 5-year-old son, Deagan. They’d gone out to dinner at Friendly’s. Her own mother had bought a corsage of white roses for Deagan to give to his mother. He had a new suit; she had a new dress.
“It’s always father-daughter dances,” Bisson said. “I was just so excited, I couldn’t wait.”
Bisson, who’s also a nurse and one of the M1 Chemo Commandos, had left her 9-month-old son at home. When he’s old enough, she’ll take both, she said, provided Deagan doesn’t think he’s too old by then to dance with mom.
“He’ll have to go,” she said. “It’s the one day a year mama gets.”
Patti Moore, another nurse and teammate, worked the busy raffle-ticket table. Her daughter and grandson had come to dance. One of the anticipated giveaways of the night: a bike shirt signed by actor Patrick Dempsey.
“This is our floor; this is for our people,” Moore said.