Dancing With the Geneva Stars: Meet Eric and Kari Bartel

This is the third in a series of stories profiling the teams competing in the 2012 Dancing with the Geneva Stars. Online voting starts Jan. 3!

  • Editor's note: The official, online voting for Dancing with the Geneva Stars begins Jan. 3. Be sure to vote often, because your votes raise funds and help determine the winning dance team! In the meantime, you can get familiar with the couples by reading this series of profiles and warm up by voting in our unofficial Geneva Patch poll.


Eric and Kari Bartel may not be America’s best dancers, but they are certainly America’s best explosive chemists.

The two met each other over an explosion in Organic Chemistry class and have been happily married for 25 years. Eric works as an Orthopedic surgeon for Fox Valley Orthopedics, and Kari works as keeper of the hearth and home. Within the community, Kari serves on the Board of Trustees for the and the Friends Board for Tri-City Family Services. Eric is a team physician for athletes.

While Kari has taken dance lessons and enjoys dancing, Eric has not danced, but is open to the idea. They both like to listen to classic rock music and have many favorite artists. When it comes to , the Bartels feel “trepidation, fear and excitement,” but mostly trepidation. In their free time when they are not worried about dancing at this event, Eric loves to run, read, do yard work or watch sporting events and Kari loves to garden, read, workout, and watch the Cubs play.

The Bartels debut performance at Dancing with the Geneva Stars will be their first time experiencing the event. The two have lived in Geneva for 15 years and love to go anywhere on Third Street, but especially love the new, .

 They ended up choosing to raise their family in Geneva because it was their “final stop after an educational tour of the Midwest.” Their three kids are Eliana, Connor and Blaine. Eliana and Connor are 18 and are currently attending North Central College. Both are majoring in biology, wherein Eliana hopes to become an occupational therapist, and Connor hopes to become a vet. They are the fourth generation of Bartels to attend North Central College. Blaine, who is 15, is a sophomore at Geneva High School. All of their children are runners and they enjoy their two Goldendoodles, named in honor of the Cubs, Ivy and Wrigley.

The Bartels love the warm, friendly community of Geneva and though they are quite nervous, are happy to be a part of this fundraising event.


This profile is courtesy of the Dancing With the Geneva Stars committee. The benefit helps the  and the . The 2012 competition will be held Feb. 4 at .


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