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February 28, 2024 / Multiple Schools

D45 families learn to Salsa

On February 27, District 45 families and the Frida Community Organization (FCO) celebrated the conclusion of a four-part Salsa Dance Class series at Jefferson Middle School. Special guests (and four-time Bachata and Salsa World Champion dancers) Ricky Ortega and Sofia Starr helped guide participants through a special bachata dance lesson and treated everyone to a fantastic salsa performance.

Over several weeks, families learned basic salsa steps and partnering skills with the help of Jefferson’s FCO Coordinator and former dance instructor, Alejandro Aguilera. Aguilera also lead the bachata dance lesson during the celebration.

Ashley Courcelle, a 7th grader at Jefferson Middle School, joined the series with her mother and older brother to gain exposure to dance skills they were unfamiliar with. Courcelle said she plans to use the skills she learned at family parties where Latin music is often played.

In addition to learning new dance skills, the series helped Courcelle build her confidence around new people. “Before, I was scared to be around strangers, but now I’m pretty chill,” said Courcelle.

Roman Zamudio and Hiliana Diaz, parents of a student at Stevenson Elementary School, joined the series to get familiar with salsa, a dance they said is similar to the cumbia they are more familiar with. Zamudio appreciated the fun atmosphere during the series and said it helped him and his wife get active again.

“It’s been a while since we’ve exercised this much,” said Zamudio. Diaz echoed the sentiment. “Yes, it’s mobilized us again. We will be looking out for more classes in the future.”

What a unique way to build confidence and get active! Congratulations to all participants for gaining a new skill. A special thank you to Ricky Ortega and Sofia Starr for a dazzling salsa performance to conclude the series!