Cruz lip sync video still

Mike Cruz, a candidate for Pinal County assessor, takes part in a lip sync battle among Casa Grande Elementary School District employees.

CASA GRANDE — A candidate for Pinal County assessor is showing he can let his hair down. Mike Cruz is one of several Casa Grande Elementary School District employees who participated in a district lip sync video contest over the last few weeks.

Cruz’s video is a more politically correct version of the scene from the 1983 movie “Risky Business” in which actor Tom Cruise dances through the house in a dress shirt and underwear to the song “Old Time Rock & Roll.” Cruz’s version swaps out the liquor for soda and briefs for gym shorts.

“We had to make it a little more PC,” Cruz said with a laugh.

District Superintendent JoEtta Gonzales said a team of directors and employees at the district office put the contest together as a fun way to honor the district’s staff and employees who have worked so hard over the last couple of months.

“They felt our staff members had been through so many emotions and challenges over the last several weeks leading to the last day — from jumping into our flexible learning framework to learning new tech tools, participating in professional development, worrying about our kids, serving thousands of meals, cleaning and sanitizing hundreds of classrooms, and balancing work from home life — so in an effort to bring some levity to the moment, they came up with this idea,” Gonzales said in an email.

The videos were made off hours and with personal computer and audio equipment. District employees received a weekly email featuring two videos and a Google form to vote for their favorite video of the week, she said.

“There were no prizes — just the sheer joy of bringing smiles and laughter to a fantastic group of employees who deserved a little fun as they ended out a stressful year,” Gonzales said.

Cruz said there may be some voters out there who may find the video unbecoming of a candidate for public office, but there may also be some voters who find it amusing.

“We were just trying to add some levity to the situation,” he said.

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