Dance classes being offered for area special needs participants

DANCING FUN  — Monica Rogers, center, poses with some of the special needs students who are enjoying a Monday dance program she is teaching at the Steubenville County Club. There also is a dance program on Thursdays at Lisa’s Elite Dance in Wintersville. Rogers is the volunteer program coordinator. -- Contributed

STEUBENVILLE — Special needs youth of the area have the opportunity to learn some fancy footwork, socialize and have fun in the process, thanks to weekly classes being offered at two locations.

Monica Rogers, volunteer program coordinator, explained a free dance program is being offered from 5:15 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. on Monday, one she is teaching at the Steubenville Country Club.

The class is freestyle, and the students often teach class, she noted,

And on Thursday at 4 p.m., Lisa’s Elite Dance at 123 Main St., Wintersville, offers a class for special needs students. The cost is $10 a month, and there is a recital every June, according to Rogers, who explained financial sponsorships are available if need be.

“The Monday dance program is something I created to keep the kids active all year long, and I personally think it’s their favorite activity aside from the parties,” explained Rogers, volunteer TOPS Soccer Program Coordinator and special needs kids/teens/adults events and activities coordinator in the Tri-State Area. TOPS is an acronym for “The Outreach Program for Soccer.”

“We break in the first week of December until the second week of January, and we also break from the beginning of June until August, so we can do outdoor activities,” Rogers noted.

“It’s so much fun,” she said. “We dance, and then I teach 15 minutes of stretch and some meditation,” she said of the Monday gatherings.

The students also enjoy the 30-minute Thursday dance classes at Lisa’s Elite Dance, according to Rogers.

“Lisa Poole has been teaching this class for three years now,” Rogers said. “The students have a blast, and they have a recital at the end of each season. Lisa is a very loving and inspiring instructor. Classes cost $10 a month, but anyone who can’t afford this, can opt to have a sponsor. If anyone would like to be a sponsor they can contact the school at (740) 346-2675,” she noted.

New students are welcomed at both venues, according to Rogers..

“I often noticed that the special needs members of our community lack the opportunities to exercise, socialize and interact with others,” Rogers said. “These are necessary factors for a happy and productive lifestyle. Keeping that in mind, we created the two exciting dance classes.”

The overall group also has monthly parties as well, and there is a fall/winter bowling league offered through Maria Jones, Rogers explained.

For information, contact Rogers at (740) 381-5056 or through the Facebook page Friends with Special Needs.