I think many of us are counting down the days until the ball drops, the calendar changes and we move into a new year. 2020 has done a number on all of us, from the pandemic, financially, community, politics, social divide, you name it – it showed its face. One thing I always thing is important is to find the GOOD. Dinners, board games, family, less time out and about and more time together. People got loud shared their voices and more people voted than ever before. Regardless of what you think or believe it is something to celebrate! There are so many things to be thankful for even in 2020.
I have been at Patty’s Dance Center since high school. This year they celebrated 50 years of business. No one successfully makes it to 50 years without hustle, drive, resilience, creativity, flexibility and not giving up. Patty’s has always been more than a studio but a family. The creativity that exudes from the building is amazing and the dancers are at a higher level than ever before. It seems that year 50 was all about testing the limits. While many studios struggled, folded, went dark, PDC thrived and has become a bright light in so many young dancer’s lives.
How did they make this happen?
- Showed they cared.
- Put safety and health first.
- Had studio calls just around community.
- Taught dance online.
- Put together a killer protocol for smaller classes, temp checks, masks, spaced out dancing.
- A new schedule with built in cleaning breaks.
I have been in awe of the hard work and dedication to keep things moving, to create a safe space, and to give dancers a bit of normal. If you are within driving distance you should check out this incredible dance studio. https://pattysdancecenter.com
As we move into Thanksgiving week I asked all the dancers to share what they’re most thankful for about dance. So PDC could see their hard work matters, teachers know their kindness is felt and the cleaning staff knows the children know they are keeping them safe. For costumes, performances, an emotional outlet, a safe place, a community, a family. Who thought dance could be so many things. Parents know it matters that you have invested in because it has always been so much more than dance.
When I asked the kids what they were thankful for, they asked me to share.
I said dance has always been my constant whether I was five or forty four. Whether I lived in Boston, Newark, or now Worthington, OH. Whether I was not yet a mom, or had four. No matter the job or relationship, a good day or bad day dance was always there.
Below are the things the PDC dancers are grateful for. If you’re a dance teacher, read these and remember how much you are loved.
Happy Thanksgiving to all of you and comment below on what you are most thankful for…..
– Love K
7-8-9 year old
- Thankful for dance, good exercise and fun.
- It is really fun to go on stage and have fun.
- I am thankful for all the teachers.
- Be around all you and have fun.
- Family other than my family at home.
- Thankful for ballet, I get to learn new things.
- For the teachers that helped me get my back handspring.
- Thankful for dance and that my parents help me out a lot and pay for costumes.
- I am thankful for relationships here and friends.
- Parents pay for it and don’t take me out of it,
- I learn how to do tumbling and got a back handspring.
- Brings me joy and makes me happy when I am sad.
9, 10, 11 year old
- Getting my pirouettes
- Thankful for everyone here.
- Thankful I still get to do ballet here.
- For dance in general and the teachers.
- That I can dance after my knee surgery.
- I get to see my friends and teachers even with masks on.
- I’m thankful I’ve gotten a lot better at barre more than last year.
- Friends I’ve made the last couple of years.
- Thankful for all the teachers.
- Being able to express myself through dance.
- To be able to still dance.
- Thankful for costumes and teachers.
- The kind of environment I get to dance in.
- Thankful they clean before I start and when I am done.
- The teachers and that I get to dance in person.
- I’m thankful I get to perform.
- I’m thankful the teachers are so kind.
- I have a place I can express myself and let out all my worries.
- If I am angry all week, it allows me to let it all out.
- Meet new people.
- Learn to express myself.
- I am safe here and I don’t get made fun of,
- I learn new things and new dances.
11- 18 year old
- Meet new people.
- My escape.
- It’s fun.
- Make new friends.
- Let my emotions out.
- It’s my home.
- Supportive and nice.
- Self confidence.
- Don’t have to be on a stupid zoom.
- It’s my happiness.
- New friends and new people.
- Second family.
- Valuable life lessons.
- I can actually be happy.
- My mom pays for it and I can escape from school and cheer.
- Coping mechanism.
- Place to let go and be yourself.
- Safe place and people are supportive.
- People support me here.
- Stress relief for anxiety and all that goes on outside of dance.
- Something to love, some people don’t have a passion for something.
- Always something to look forward to, my happy place.
- It gives me another family to come to.
- Gives me best friends and a chance to be myself.
- Be surrounded by people that have the same passion as you.
- Dance is always fun and never boring.
- Something to go to to get rid of everything else outside.
- Able to do what I love and be surrounded by people who Love what I do.
- Dance brings people together, especially during a pandemic.
- It’s my safety and security.
- Source of Joy.
- Grateful to see each other and make it as normal as possible,
- Second family and thankful for my parents willingness to support me.
- Huge piece of who I am.
- Be myself and express myself.
- I get to keep dancing and working on my skills.
- This is where I have met all my closest friends.
- Hang out with my friends and do something I love to do.
- Allow for me to bond with new people.
- Second family, way to express myself.
- Get to do what I like to do, with people that like to do what I like to do.
- Improve my dancing during Corona Virus,
- Surrounded by people I am great friends with.