TAWANDA "WAWA" Jones would always joke that the drill team she founded, the Camden Sophisticated Sisters (CSS), was ready to make its Hollywood debut.
On Tuesday, that aspirational joke became reality when the CSS girls taught the celebs how it was done on ABC's "Dancing with the Stars."
The eight ladies from South Jersey performed a stunning number to Beyonce's "Get Me Bodied." To see a video of their performance, go to ph.ly/CamdenDWTS.
Jones still can't believe her troupe made it to prime time. "Whoopi Goldberg even mentioned us on 'The View!' " she said.
DWTS hosts Tom Bergeron and Brooke Burke-Charvet gifted CSS, who practice in a windowless water tower, with mirrors for their studio.
"When we first got here, they really wanted to walk on Rodeo Drive. We took them to the Hollywood sign, but I think we're too cute for the Hollywood sign," Jones said. They didn't realize the famed signage was high up on a mountain and their heels and dresses were not the best gear for hiking, but that didn't stop the young women of CSS from trekking to the top.
"My babies have not stopped smiling since we got here," Jones said. The eight girls, who were chosen from about 150 who participate in the drill team, were especially psyched about Disney star/DWTS contestant Zendaya.
Camden firefighters donated their hall to the rest of the drill-team girls so they could hold a viewing party.
When DWTS producers initially reached out to Jones, she couldn't believe it. "I was embarrassed. I asked the woman on the phone 'Who is this, again?' three times. Soon, I had to put it on speakerphone so the kids could hear. I don't even remember our whole conversation, I was so excited," Jones said.
CSS' next performance is a little closer to home. They'll be in Atlantic City tomorrow.
Jones hopes that the added media attention will allow the CSS to find a permanent home base (CSS takes donations through their website,
camdensophisticatedsisters.org). "We're so in the need of a space to house the girls, because this isn't about drill team," Jones said. "This is about saving lives."
Musician-turned-director Rob Zombie gave Center City's Pro League Authentics (137 S. 13th St.) the go-ahead to sell the official T-shirts for Zombie's upcoming "Broad Street Bullies" film. One dollar from each purchase of the $30 T-shirts will go to support Teen Cancer America. Zombie told me earlier this year that he plans to start shooting "Broad Street Bullies" in the fall, hopefully in Philly.
"The Real Housewives of New Jersey's" Caroline Manzo will be at the C. Wonder store at the King of Prussia Mall on Saturday, signing copies of her new book, Let Me Tell You Something. She'll be there from 1 to 3 p.m.
Manzo isn't the only housewife coming to Philly. Manzo's frenemy Teresa Giudice will stop by the Penn Bookstore on May 23 at 6 p.m. to sign copies of her new cookbook, Fabulicious! On the Grill.
Know a tattoo artist with the mettle to make it on reality television? Oxygen's "Best Ink" will be looking for tattooers to feature in the third season of their competitive reality show. Producers will set up shop at McFadden's (361 N. 3rd St.) from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday.