Fans of Dancing With the Stars know Bindi Irwin and Derek Hough shared a great connection on the dance floor. This weekend, Hough showed up at the Steve Irwin Gala Dinner to honor Bindi’s father and to raise money for the family’s charity, Wildlife Warriors. But Derek was not the only DWTS alum to make an appearance. Host Tom Bergeron had M.C. duties, along with legendary Australian singer Olivia Newton-John, who also sat in as a guest judge during Bindi’s Dancing With the Stars season.
Bindi, the impressive 17-year-old who has been in the public eye since she was a child, even before her father’s passing in 2006, spoke eloquently at the gala. As People reported, she acknowledged the people who showed up for the evening and expressed appreciation for their roles in her life.
“For me, tonight feels so good because it’s honestly like my extended family is all here. It just feels so complete. I have my beautiful family. My wonderful boyfriend [Chandler Powell] is here tonight; our ‘Dancing with the Stars’ family; Olivia Newton John is here. It’s just everybody that I love so much, and that our family loves so much. So it is the best event, and I think that Dad’s spirit is really kind of living on in all of us.”
As the Inquisitr reported last week, Bindi has been very busy since Dancing With the Stars ended, getting her driver’s license, taking college classes, and doing charitable works. She and Powell have been in a relationship for a few years and she accompanied him to his Florida prom last year.
— Tom Bergeron (@Tom_Bergeron) May 22, 2016
Bindi’s mother Terri told People that Bindi shares her father’s determination; once her mind is set, she forges ahead. She also revealed that Steve Irwin’s son, Bindi’s younger brother Robert, looks a lot like him.
“[Steve] was also very childlike and fun with his enthusiasm and passion, and I see that in both Bindi and Robert.
“[T]he physical look-alike is amazing… and [Robert’s] got a really brilliant mind, and Steve was like that.”
Robert, like his father, is interested in photography. The so-called “Crocodile Hunter” passed away from a stingray puncture at the age of 44. Both Bindi and Robert were young children at the time.
— Terri Irwin (@TerriIrwin) May 22, 2016
Bindi Irwin will be on-hand to help usher in a new champion on Dancing With the Stars. She has already been involved with this season, appearing on DWTS All Access and during one segment throwing the show to commercial alongside Bergeron.
She told USA Today that this year’s crop of contestants should enjoy the experience. It’s already down to the final three: Ginger Zee, Paige Van Zant, and Nyle DiMarco. Bigger name celebrities, such as Jodie Sweetin and Kim Fields, were eliminated earlier in the season. Irwin expressed a desire to make everyone feel better as the end approaches and tension mounts for the last competitors.
“I really just want to go and hug everybody.”
Fans of Dancing With the Stars still have a couple of days to wait before finding out who takes home the mirror ball trophy. The show airs Monday before the debut of a new season of The Bachelorette, and on Tuesday, when a new winner is crowned. The action gets underway Monday night at 8 p.m. on ABC.
[Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images]