We attended this event to supplement our absence from USDC that year. Galaxy was a relatively new event, hosted by Sam Sadano, John DePalma, Marianne Nicole, and Linda Dean.
The event was held at the Arizona Biltmore, nicknamed the "Jewel of the Desert", and rightfully so. The hotel is a beautiful art deco structure with a maze of gardens and swimming pools. The Arizona Biltmore's architect was Albert Chase McArthur, yet it is often mistakenly attributed to Frank Lloyd Wright, owing to Wright's on-site consulting during construction.
When the hotel was renovated in the 1970's, additional features were installed as tribute to Wright, including the stained glass window in the Lobby.
I must admit that out of all the events we attended that year, this event still remains as one of my favorites.
When we arrived to Phoenix, we were greeted by the pounding heat that the region still experiences in early September. The event was on the small side, but packed with power. The judges and event organizers seemed more up close and personal at Galaxy, which gave the event a more intimate feel.
Between evening sessions at this event, we spent a lot of time with Martin Crawston, and his students, JoAnn Demoss and Judy Karlsen. We enjoyed spending time with this group as Martin held court with his engaging sense of humor.
Our pro/am rounds at this event went reasonably well. The dancing was stress free, it was the opposite experience of USDC, where there was so much pressure to win.
Outside of dancing, we enjoyed time at the Arizona Biltmore's poolside resort
During my alone time, I got to walk through some of the hotel's many amazing gardens.
At the center courtyard of the hotel,
Are the statues of FLW's Midway Sprites. I don't know if these statues were replicas or in fact the originals from the Chicago Midway Gardens, but in any case they were on display as a tribute to Wright, which further fuels the debate as to the true architect of the hotel.
We also danced in Galaxy's Country Western division.