Stillwater News Press

Columns

June 22, 2014

AND STILL THE WATERS RUN: Club puts dance back in Stillwater

When the Idella Lohmann Ballroom Dance Club of Stillwater stopped meeting a few years ago, many dancers continued their passion by driving to larger cities to take lessons and practice. Lonnie Pricer and LaDonna Taylor want the community to have a venue where dancers can meet in the area again. They formed Let’s Dance Stillwater to fill the gap left when the former ballroom club disbanded.

“Let’s Dance Stillwater’s mission is to provide opportunities for people of all ages in a fun atmosphere that encourages learning and enjoying dancing from different styles,” Taylor said. “Our vision is to bring together people of different cultures and backgrounds with a common love of dance. We offer group lessons on Mondays and social dances on two Fridays each month.”

Group lessons begin at 6:30 p.m. Mondays with an intermediate session following at 7:30 p.m. Taylor said to call ahead if Monday is a designated holiday. Private lessons and workshops are offered, too.

The next social dance practice session is from 8-10:30 p.m. Friday at 208 West 10th Avenue near Husband Street. The club’s location is the former Groom’s Furniture Store which has a wooden floor conducive to dancing. Before each social dance, a basic lesson is planned at 7 p.m.  Dance music for the evening will include ballroom, west coast swing and Latin with country and western, too. Mixers are featured to help people learn from other dancers. Music from the first dance program in June ranged from a fox-trot to “I Want to be Loved by You” to an east coast swing to “Zoot Suit Riot.” Country western selections the same evening ranged from a west coast swing to “Cowboy Casanova” to a two-stepping “Redneck Woman.” Rumba, cha cha, waltz, tango, polka and bachata were all dance styles included in the practice mix. The club plans to offer social dances on the second and fourth Fridays of each month. They accept music requests and want dancers to let them know their favorite songs.

The facility is a smoke-free environment with dancers spanning the ages from elementary school students to more than 80 years old.

“Dancing builds your stamina and helps with balance and coordination,” Taylor said. “It’s a great mental stimulate increasing your memory capacity, too. All ability levels are welcome – it just takes that first step.”

She said many men that are dancing now wished they had started sooner. Dance shoes are not required but comfortable shoes are suggested. Sometimes gym shoes will tend to stick on the wooden floors so the dancer may have to try using different shoes.

“People think ballroom is all about being formal – but you don’t have to be all fancy and dressed up,” she said.

All lessons and dance practices are under a donation system until the club membership is established. More information is available by calling 405-780-5165 or emailing letsdancestillwater@mail.com.

Elizabeth Keys writes for the Stillwater News Press. “And, Still the Waters Run” tells stories about people and events in the area. Share your news by emailing activities, photos or ideas to ekeys@stwnews-press.com.

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