Chelsea Kane blows into NYC’s Planet Hollywood Times Square on Wednesday at 4 p.m. to donate her dancing shoes from her final spin on Dancing With The Stars.

“It’s awesome,” she tells me. “I mean, I’m glad to donate them, and also to never have to wear them again, [laughs] because it was a very painful experience. [laughs] My feet will never be the same. Those heels are not easy to dance in!”

For the 22-year-old Disney darling, taking third place in the reality competition was just the beginning of her very long day.

“It’s been a whirlwind,” she tells me of the past 24 hours. “Something that I will wake up from tomorrow, and be like ’that just happened?’ We have been awake for a solid 24 hours. Actually, I think the rest of the contestants are at home asleep now, but I have put in a full day. Being in the finale of Dancing was such a whirlwind to begin with, and win or lose, I was so thrilled to be there, to be still in the fight.”

She adds, “Right afterwards, the final six jumped in a private plane, which is something I’ve never experienced, and flew all night to New York. Of course, we had every intention of sleeping, but there was a lot of celebrating going on on the plane. We landed in NYC, and we were on a double-decker bus on our way into Good Morning America this morning, and it’s been nonstop since we got here.”

The contestants kept entertained with a family road trip favorite.

Kirstie [Alley] had a hilarious game last night called ‘I’m Going On Vacation, and I’m Bringing’ … have you ever played that game? Where everyone adds onto it? Everyone was into it. We got through a bunch of rounds, and Tony [Dovolani] and I ended up tying, and Hines [Ward] came in third. I was giving Hines a hard time – I was like ‘how does it feel to come in third place?’ [laughs]”

Despite placing third on DWTS, the experience has greatly improved Chelsea’s life.

“I think I’ll take away a little bit of everything. The friendships, the fearlessness, definitely the rush of risk-taking, and how good it feels when it pays off. I’ll really take that with me.”

What was it like having her Jonas co-stars the Jonas Brothers in the audience rooting for her?

“Those are my boys. They’re family. We went through a lot together, and it was an interesting role-reversal. Usually I’m in the audience cheering them on, so to have them clapping for me, and cheering me on, was sweet. It meant a lot to me that they came out to the show.”

After she gets a long night’s sleep, Chelsea plans to focus on the future.

“I’ll be going back to L.A., and I’m still working on Fish Hooks with Disney Channel. The new season starts in June – every Friday at 9 p.m. Other than that, DWTS has opened a lot of doors for me, and I’m excited to explore those options, and see which one is the best fit for me, and for the fanbase that supported me through DWTS. I’m looking for something that we can all go through together.”

Still, she’s thrilled to hear she was my mom’s pick to win the show.

“Tell your mom that I love her,” she says. “That’s awesome.”

Here’s my pic with Chelsea:


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