Dancer & Tumbler of the Year

Each month Mary will pick one child to be Dancer of the Month and Dan will pick one child to be Tumbler of the Month.  From these, one Dancer of the Year and one Tumbler of the Year will be chosen at the dance recital in May.

The following criteria will be used in making these selections:

  • The student must be at least ten years of age.
  • The student must have good attendance and attitude.
  • The student must show improvement in skills and signs of home practice.
  • The student must dress properly for class.


  • A child may be chosen only once in a school year.
  • The student may be Dancer of the Month and Tumbler of the Month in the same school year.
  • Those chosen cannot be teachers but may be demonstrators, aides, and/or teaching assistants.

Awards for Dancer and Tumbler of the Month:

  • The student’s picture is displayed in the studio.
  • The student’s name is in the recital program.
  • The student becomes eligible for Dancer or Tumbler of the Year.

Awards for Dancer and Tumbler of the Year:

  • A Trophy for the student
  • The student’s name on the plaque in the studio
  • A Gift Certificate for $50 worth of merchandise

Past Dancers of the Year

1989 Kristy Kelch
1990 Kari Oetzel
1991 Amy Cassidy
1992 Tamara Hittle
1993 Mandy Hoback
1994 Kelly Jacobs
1995 Amanda Smith
1995 Mindy Waldschmidt
1996 Devery Christ
1997 Brittney Kuehn
Tina Hogbin
1998 Jenni Appleyard
1999 Jennifer VanBrooker
2000 Betsy Noack
Marla Pitts
2001 Cailee Linzenmeyer
2002 Laura Punke
Kistina Roberson-Reynolds
Meagan Davis
2003 Emily Zulz
Leah Zulz
2004 Lisa Schertz
Courtney Smith
Jessica Husted
2005 Katy Crenshaw
Alyssa Eckstein
2006 Margaret Greenhalgh
Kaitlyn Ward
2007 Julia Burns
Cassandra Supak
2008 Clare Maksimovich
2009 Monica Jay
2010 Megan Armstrong
Carolyn Kimbro
2011 Baylee Martin
2012 Emily Armstrong
Tessa Merkel
2013 Darrell Kimbro
2014 Caroline Martin
2015 Sylvie Twait
2016 Hannah Clark
David Snook
2017 Bailey Kenar
2018 Ally Sigman
Rebecca Kimbro

Past Tumblers of the Year

1989 Michael Knoblauch
1990 Kristi Koch
1991 Kelly Schaer
1992 Stephanie Gerber
1993 Sarah Keyser
1994 Heidi Hinrichsen
1995 Jodi Glover
1996 Lacey Durst
1997 Matt Goodyear
Katrina Callihan
1998 Heidi Nauman
Tim Orzechowski
1999 Lindsey Mettler
2000 Melanie Obery
2001 Brooke Bernitt
2002 Stephanie Kurtz
2003 Chelsea DeLap
Courtney DeLap
2004 Alyssa Eckstein
2005 Kaitlyn Hartnett
2006 Sean Greenhalgh
Taylor Stewart
2007 Elizabeth Curry
2008 Marshall Parsons
2009 Eli Masters
2010 Hannah Brownfield
2011 David Greenhalgh
2012 Kaitlyn Roley
2013 Brooklyn Martin
2014 Eliza Fletcher
2015 Brianne Roley
2016 Bri Wetzler
2017 Michael Meinert
2018 Samuel Coartney
Gabe Meinert

Lydia M. Moritz Scholarship

Mary’s mother, Lydia M. Moritz, passed away in March, 1999.  Lydia was a lifelong advocate of the arts and because of her dedication to Mary’s arts education, Mary set up a scholarship in her name.  Each year at the dance recital Mary announces the recipient for the next year.

The following criteria will be used to make the selection:

  • The student must be at least ten years of age and a dance student at Merrilee Studios for at least the two preceding years.
  • The student must be a serious ballet student.
  • The student must have good attendance and attitude and show respect for the teachers.
  • The student must show signs of home practice and an improvement in skills.
  • The student must dress properly for class.
  • The student must show the importance of dance in his/her life.
  • The student must submit a written composition during the month of April stating why he or she should receive the scholarship.

If those who apply for the scholarship are not considered to be ready for this commitment, no scholarship will be offered that year.

The chosen recipient is expected to take classes the summer before the scholarship year and will receive ALL dance classes for the next school year free of tuition. This is a $2000-$2500 scholarship. If your child is interested in this scholarship, he/she must work for it throughout the year.

Past Winners

1999 Brittney Kuehn
2000 Emily Rowden
2001 Meagan Davis
2002 Leah Zulz
2003 Samantha Cremer
2004 Katy Crenshaw
2005 Margaret Greenhalgh
2006 Julia Burns
2007 Clare Maksimovich
2008 Carolyn Kimbro
2009 Megan Armstrong
2010 Abigail Bachman
Montana Parsons
2011 Emily Morgan
2012 Darrell Kimbro
2013 Caitlin Miller
2014 McKenna Coartney
2015 David Snook
Hannah Clark
2016 Bailey Kenar
Mantha McMurtrey
2017 Hannah Coartney
Lilly Twait
2018 Amy Masters

Edmund F. Moritz Scholarship

Mary’s father Edmund F. Moritz passed away in November, 2003.  Mary’s mother may have taken her to all her classes, but her dad paid for them and her many costumes.  In his memory, Merrilee Studios offers an award to be presented each spring at the dance recital.  This Award provides the family with $200 worth of costumes to be used in the following year’s recital.

The following criteria will be used in making the selection:

  • The children in the family must have taken classes in the studio for at least one year including summers.
  • At least one child in the family must also take 3 or more dance classes during the award year.
  • The parent of the child applying for the award must write a short essay telling why the award would be helpful.

Past Winners

2004 Sean Greenhalgh
Margaret Greenhalgh
2005 Kayla Jean Axsom
Savannah Hack
2006 Tessa Merkel
2007 Abigail Bachman
Madalyn Bachman
2008 Amanda Au
Bella Au
2009 Carolyn Kimbro
Darrell Kimbro
Sarah Kimbro
Rebecca Kimbro
2010 Summer Tharp
Baillie Larson
Madalyn Wyss
2011 None – no applications received
2012 Isabella Jones
2013 Chloe Troyer
Micah Troyer
2014 Lilly Twait
Sylvie Twait
2015 Helen Ward
Vivian Ward
Henry Ward
2016 Laura Bachman
2017 Bri Wetzler
Alli Wetzler
2018 Kali Kirkham
Maya Kirkham