It's strictly fish and chips for TV dance star Karen Hauer in Grimsby
STUNNING Strictly Come Dancing star Karen Hauer, wowed a ballroom of dancers during her debut performance in Grimsby.
The dancer performed a Latin American routine with her boyfriend Kevin Clifton, of Cleethorpes, at Clifton Dance Academy's annual Christmas dinner dance at the Humber Royal Hotel, in Grimsby.
It was a similar routine to the one she performed with Westlife heartthrob Nicky Byrne and her first dance since she was voted out of the popular TV competition.
In an exclusive interview with the Grimsby Telegraph, the Venezuelan-born beauty described her time on the show as "amazing" and spoke of her love for the "family warmth" she feels when she visits North East Lincolnshire.
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She said: "We had our ups and downs as all the dancers do, but the ups were amazing and the downs weren't so bad.
"Making it into the top six and it being my first year was a great accomplishment and it was great to dance with Nicky.
"It feels great to be dancing in Grimsby. It is the first performance since the show and it feels lovely to do it for Kevin's family and friends. They have been treated to a lot of quick twirls and steps – everything they saw in Strictly, except all the lifts that we weren't allowed to do on the show! It has been a fun night, we love performing together and showing what ballroom is all about."
Kevin's parents Keith and Judy Clifton who have run the academy in Cleethorpes for 25 years.
Karen and Kevin, who works as a choreographer for the TV show, managed to squeeze in the performance despite still having heavy commitments to Strictly.
While Kevin still works on the show, Karen is preparing for the Strictly Christmas show performance as well as rehearsing for the show's tour, which begins in January, and both were back in London for 9.30am yesterday.
They will spend Christmas in Cleethorpes – before jetting off to New York for the new year – and are looking forward to a well-deserved break.
Karen added: "I love coming here – you have the best fish and chips I have ever tasted!"