Star Power

‘Dancing Queen’ is theme for Karyl Kant’s birthday

The Kant family couldn’t let sister Karyl’s 40th birthday pass with just a card or two. Their special sister would enjoy a little fuss over her big day, the family knew, especially if her favorite activity was involved: Dancing.

So “Dancing Queen” was chosen as the theme of the party and the family T-shirts for Karyl Kant’s celebration of her 40th birthday.

Karyl’s actual birthday is Oct. 1, but the big day was on Saturday, Oct. 3, at the Capitol Theatre. Since Karyl loves to dance, the “Dancing Queen” made its way onto the commemorative T-shirts and into the entertainment. The DJ at the Capitol pulled out all stops -- from great music to special lighting effects to a fog machine to set the mood on the dance floor.

Karyl is the daughter of Dr. Kenneth and Elaine Kant. Dr. Kenneth is recently retired from his veterinarian practice in Blount County. Karyl’s brothers and sister and their families came in full force for the party.

Oldest brother Kacey and wife Leta came from Nashville with children Rachael, Kelsey and Conner Kant. Kyle and Raina Kant live in Blount County, and their children Acadia and Kamryn Kant were active party-goers, too. Traveling from Rochester, New York, were Dr. Kristin Kant-Byers and her husband, Carl Byers.

Joining the immediate family were other family and friends, with more than 100 people coming to wish Karyl a “Happy Birthday.”

Karyl is well-known not only for her love of dance, but for her sports ability as a Special Olympics athlete. She was the first Special Olympics athlete to be inducted into the Blount County Sports Hall of Fame. Karyl now loves weigh-lifting, but over the years has competed in and enjoyed track and field, snow skiing, basketball and bowling.

“I can’t really express how great a person Karyl is,” says her brother Kyle. “She is always so sweet and caring, and she keeps everyone in line. Karyl was mainstreamed at Heritage, and she used to show sheep and chickens and was very active in 4-H. She is a great person, and we loved honoring her on her birthday.”

Another special guest at the party was Karyl’s paternal grandmother, 96-year-old Irene Butler. The family will spend Thanksgiving with Irene and then get ready for a busy weekend at Razberries in Maryville and Blackberries in Townsend, which are owned by Kyle and Raina.

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