By People Staff
Updated December 01, 2020 04:10 PM
Credit: Adam Larkey/ABC (2)

PARTING GIFT: Before Tuesday s big finale, Maksim Chmerkovskiy surprised partner Erin Andrews with a gift. “He came into my trailer today and gave me a garment bag and I was like … You bought me a dress?” Andrews tells PEOPLE, her eyes welling up. She explained: “He went and got me my samba costume because it was my favorite outfit he designed for me. I then had to go to the makeup trailer because I was crying.” Maks smiled and tried to keep his composure, but admitted, “This season has been incredible. Everybody says I was a different Maks. But I m not. This is the real me.”

ROAD TRIP: The season 10 cast have talked about the friendships formed during the intense months on the show – and now, the gang can t wait to hang out. “Maks and Tony Dovolani and I have been talking about going to the Hamptons and golfing,” Evan Lysacek told PEOPLE. “Maybe we ll bring some of the girls with us.” Adds Maks: “We re a tight family now. It doesn t take much to get us together – a smoke signal and everybody comes flocking around.”

COMFORT ZONE: Dancing‘s finale was filled with surprises – including Kate Gosselin on a cherry-picker and Pamela Anderson‘s descent on a swing. But for Niecy, aerobatics were out of the question. “I don t do heights,” she said. Speaking of trying something new, Vienna Girardi made her ballroom debut with fiancé Jake Pavelka, dancing an elegant waltz alongside pros Dmitry Chaplin and Chelsie Hightower. “Tonight was Vienna s night and she shined,” he said. But before the performance, Girardi wasn’t so sure. “All I could think was ‘Don t fall!’ ” she said. “My palms were sweaty and as I was standing with Dmitry and my knees were shaking. I was like, You ve got to do this – 25 million are watching!’ ”

MAMA S BOY: Winner Derek Hough s mother, Marianne Nelson, beamed as she watch his best friend, Mark Ballas, parade him around the dance floor on his shoulders. After the show, an exuberant Hough scooped up handfuls of gold confetti and showered partner Nicole Scherzinger. “I m really excited for him,” Nelson told PEOPLE after the show. “He s such a good guy. He s very tenderhearted and such a sweetheart. Nicole has been a great partner for him. She s been such a sweetheart and her talent is amazing.”

WHAT S NEXT: Summer is here, and the cast will head in different directions. Anna Trebunskaya says she and her dance pro hubby Jonathan Roberts “are going to go to a spa for a few days,” she says. Meanwhile, Edyta Sliwinska will trek to her native Poland to visit her pregnant sister and family. Derek and Maks will head to London for a competition, while Jake and Vienna will pack up their belongings and relocate to Los Angeles. Chad Ochocinco, who did not perform Tuesday night, begins shooting his VH1 reality dating show Ochocinco: The Ultimate Catch next month, before returning to training camp with the Cincinnati Bengals. As for whether there will be another Olympics for Evan Lysacek, the skater says he s not going to decide just yet. “I ve gotten some interesting offers to work in Hollywood and to work in broadcasting,” he says, “so we ll see.” – Monica Rizzo