Ribaudo: Ode to Miss Marcia-The Shiniest Star (Opinion) | TahoeDailyTribune.com
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Ribaudo: Ode to Miss Marcia-The Shiniest Star (Opinion)

Carl Ribaudo / Tribune columnist

Many just lost someone special. You know that feeling when you lose a parent, that special aunt or uncle, that sadness that descends on you when you realize all that is there are the memories. 

The community lost an icon. Forget about politicians that clamor for public attention by promising the moon. She delivered with thousands of her shining stars. 

In my 30-plus years of living here, nobody reached kids like Miss Marcia. She could have been a friend, someone’s substitute mother, an Auntie, or a cousin to any one of her shining stars. Her passing matters because she made such a difference in people’s lives. I don’t know of one person in South Shore who has made such a difference in young people’s lives as Marica did. Legions of kids have passed through her program and experienced her wisdom and have had the good luck to have had their lives in some way influenced by their time in her studio.



Watching Marcia was like a symphony conductor at the top of their game. She was a maestro in tights. From the oldest student dancers to the youngest toddlers taking their first steps, everybody helped everybody. Everyone had a role; it was a beautiful thing to watch. I used to joke with Marcia all the time. If she would only be the mayor of South Lake Tahoe, we would all be better off. 

The recital was her signature. It was everything; from the cupcakes for sale to the last curtain call, it was not to be missed. Friends and relatives around the country would descend on South Shore to see their little one’s dance. It was an event she managed precisely, the perfect combination of art, kids, family, and homegrown fun rolled into a recital. Tickets were a must-have.  



In this day of skepticism and cynicism, how does one person have such an impact? Marcia had the secret. It is no small wonder all the tears and broken hearts since the news of her passing.  

I saw her a week before her passing as she was getting ready for a workout over at Pelodog as I was finishing mine and, as she always did, told me a few ideas I should write about. She also asked me about my daughter and granddaughter, just checking up on one of her shining stars as I am sure she did with all of them.

Miss Marcia is gone, but can she ever really be forgotten, especially in the hearts of those she touched. It’s now their turn to touch those beyond themselves the way Marcia touched them. To make such a significant difference in someone else’s life, there is no higher calling. Miss Marcia has done enough; it’s time for her to rest and her shining stars to take over. No Miss Marcia will live on. Rest In Peace, the shiniest star of them all.

It is a Wrap

I am not much for public recognition, but I make an exception in this case. It would be fitting for this community at some point to honor Marcia in some public way, and how to do it is for others to decide, but it would be fitting, and I’ll leave it at that.

Carl Ribaudo is a columnist, consultant, speaker, and writer in South Lake Tahoe. you can reach him at carl@smgonline.net.


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