HomeLifestyleEntertainmentPhotojournalism: SafeHomes' 2023 Fake It to Make It

Photojournalism: SafeHomes’ 2023 Fake It to Make It



On Friday, Jan. 27, the Columbia County Performing Arts Center hosted SafeHomes’ Seventh Annual Fake It to Make It fundraiser – a lip sync challenge where teams battle it out on stage with energetic dancing.

After seven teams performed two rounds and local dance studios showcased some elaborate routines, SafeHomes announced the winners of the competition, and that over $242,000 had been raised by the night’s end.

Three out of the seven teams won a victory belt and celebrated their hard work’s accomplishment of bringing awareness to domestic violence.

Lindsay Crump, team leader for Bo$$ Babes, said the endless practicing was worth the time and effort.

“It’s fun and it’s just really amazing,” she said. “I’ve been coming to this show every year, and man it’s an amazing show for a wonderful cause.”

Matt Kelly, leader of Fleetwood Matt, said his performances were an effort by the entire team, and that he was proud of the community’s generosity towards SafeHomes.

“I’m an entertainer, so I love to do that,” he said. “Next year I’m going to take a break, but then I’ll be back to do it again.”

As people sang and danced along with the various teams, audiences could be seen enjoying an early start to their weekend by supporting a local charity and service for women.

Master of Ceremonies Jay Jefferies said he wanted to be involved in the fundraiser, because one never knows when the services of SafeHomes are needed most by individuals.

“You have to support places and things in the CSRA that you may or may not ever have to use,” he said. “It touches your heart, and it touches individuals one way or the other – whether it’s you directly, some family member or an individual that you know as a friend.”

Jefferies also said he would love to host it again and again as he believes the cause is a necessary and important resource.

“This is my fourth time being a part of this event in some kind of way, and I just enjoy it so much,” said Chris Bender, team leader of High Voltage. “SafeHomes helps support women of domestic violence, and just to actually hear survivors’ stories really hits my heart.”

Bender said it was an honor to be participate and raise money for a cause that goes above and beyond to help those in need. He encourages others to join in on the fun for next year’s teams by taking the time to have fun with the competition, and to remember those who have suffered domestic abuse.

“Really put yourself in their shoes and what they’ve gone through, because I think that in itself helps bring awareness, and gets others involved,” he said.

Bender said the lip sync battle was a pleasant way to discuss a serious topic, while also highly encouraging others to donate to the cause.

Soul Patrol’s team leader Selina Soul began the competition by lip syncing the song “Car Wash” by Rose Royce. Photo by Liz Wright.
Marky Mark and the Movement Bunch, led by Mark Halvorsen from Movement Mortgage, was next on stage with a reenactment of “Bang Bang” by Jessie J, Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj. Photo by Liz Wright.
Bo$$ Babes leader Lindsay Crump lip sync’s a medley of songs, including Cyndi Lauper’s “Girls Just Want to Have Fun.”
Bo$$ Babes leader Lindsay Crump lip sync’s a medley of songs, including Cyndi Lauper’s “Girls Just Want to Have Fun.”
High Voltage’s team leader Chris Bender lip sync’s Eminem’s “Lose Yourself.” Bender also lip synced Montell Jordan’s “This Is How We Do It” and DJ Khaled’s “All I Do Is Win.” Photo by Liz Wright.
Leader Heather Smith for Team Lip’Nsync themed her group’s songs around the Backstreet Boys’ and Justin Timberlake’s biggest hits. Smith’s crew dances along to Timberlake’s “Suit & Tie.” Photo by Liz Wright.
Matt Kelly’s team, Fleetwood Matt, performed their first set around Fleetwood Mac’s famous hit “Landslide.” Photo by Liz Wright.
Matt Kelly lip syncs to Stevie Nicks’ “Edge of Seventeen” with a memorable white winged dove costume. Photo by Liz Wright.
Matt Kelly dances and lip syncs to several songs in elaborate costumes. Photo by Liz Wright.
Team Feature Flav, led by Susan See from Nothing Bundt Cakes, lip sync to Madonna’s “Material Girl” and “Vogue.” Photo by Liz Wright.
Students from Free Movement Dance Studio perform a heartfelt dance to Kesha’s “Prayin’.” Photo by Liz Wright.
Teachers and friends of the North Augusta School of Dance Inc. perform several dances at halftime for the 2023 Fake It to Make It. Photo by Liz Wright.
Team Bo$$ Babes lip sync in the second round of the competition with fun props. Photo by Liz Wright.
Matt Kelly’s Fleetwood Matt team began their second set with a dramatic entrance to lip sync Dolly Parton’s “9 to 5.” Photo by Liz Wright.
With a quick costume change, Matt Kelly strikes a power pose to end his crew’s final performance of the night. Photo by Liz Wright.
Leader Heather Smith for Team Lip’Nsync smiles and dances in 90s fashion for SafeHomes’ 2023 Fake It to Make It Lip Sync Challenge. Photo by Liz Wright.
Soul Patrol’s lead Selina Soul lip syncs Aretha Franklin’s “Rock Steady.” Photo by Liz Wright.
Travis Wagher, from team Feature Flav, dances and lip syncs passionately among his teammates. Photo by Liz Wright.
Towards the end of the program, after battling 6 other teams, Team Bo$$ Babes is announced as the night’s first winner. The team celebrates winning the Judges’ Choice 2023 victory belt. Photo by Liz Wright.
Fleetwood Matt wins a victory belt by being the top fundraising band of the night. Photo by Liz Wright.
After being announced the winner of the People’s Choice award, Chris Bender and his team celebrate their win together with a brief celebratory dance. Photo by Liz Wright.
North Augusta School of Dance Inc. dances as one of the competition’s judges sings Christina Aguilera’s “Beautiful” in dedication to domestics violence survivors. Photo by Liz Wright.

Liz Wright is a staff writer covering education, lifestyle and general assignments for The Augusta Press. Reach her at liz@theaugustapress.com 

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  1. Great show for a great cause, but the Columbia County Performance Center is the most unfriendly and uncomfortable venue in the region.
    The sound was terrible, patrons were not allowed to go outside for a breath of fresh air during a 30 minute long intermission, with cops posted at the doors keeping ticket holders trapped inside in the swelteringly warm & airless theater & lobby. This will be the last ticket I ever buy for this theater!
    There won’t bec

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