Troy-Haynor Cultural Center offers new
2018 dance classes

Ronnie and Cindy Mullins in competitive dress dancing in the studio.

By Megan Garrison

Troy-Hayner Cultural Center alone is an impressive institution, add their dance classes, and you open Dayton up to new experiences. Leona Sargent who has been the Exhibit Coordinator since April 2014, is a vital member when it comes to providing staff support.

“We currently offer three types of dance classes,” said Sargent. “The classes include Ballet for Girls, Round Dance, and Ballroom Dance. There are 10 different times for ballet instruction throughout the week. Those classes are divided up by age and are offered at a variety of times. The Round Dance instructors offer two classes this quarter. These classes require some previous dance experience. 6 Ballroom Dance classes are being offered this quarter. Some of the classes are for beginners, and some for those with a little dance training.”

And with the amount of dance classes offered, that leads to a number of experienced dance instructors, each of whom have their own pedigree.

“We have one ballet instructor, Cynthia Shreffler, who has been teaching girls ballet in our ballroom for 30 years,” said Sargent. “Bud and Elaine Wintrow have been teaching Round Dance at the Hayner Center for at least a decade. And, Ronnie and Cindy Mullins, who teach Ballroom Dance, are our newest dance instructors. They have been teaching here for about 2 years.”

Cindy and Ronnie Mullins met on a dance floor. It’s a classic love story; he asked her to dance, she said “Yes,” and now they own a dance studio together. Together, they’ve won numerous titles, and they were named the 2015 World Champions in their age division. But it’s a love of dance that keeps people coming back to work with the couple, at the Troy-Hayner Cultural Center and at their own studio in Tipp City.

“We have a couple of ladies who have been around for 10 years almost,” said Cindy. “They even dance competitively with us.”

Their studio, Outback Dance Studio, has been a ballroom, swing, and country dance staple for 15 years now. And within the last 3 years the Mullins have separated their time between their own studio and Troy-Hayner. The class sizes run from 6 to 20 people and from beginers to advanced dancers.

“Our students enjoy the small classes,” said Mullins, “it gives them more individual attention.”

Not only do they teach traditional ballroom, which includes the waltz, the cha cha, and the rumba but, also, East and West Coast swing. West Coast swing has its start in the Lindy Hop, and it is all about the partner connection. East Coast swing is similar to the jitterbug, but it allows for more improvisation.

“West Coast swing is our most popular dance style for younger students,” said Mullins.

And while they certainly know these styles, Ronnie and Cindy, actually find their home in competitive country dancing. The switch from ballroom had originally been because of the high price of those competitions.

“We had a group of students go to San Franciso with us for the world competitions recently,” said Mullins. “One of our couples won 1st overall.”

If you aren’t the competitive type or you’re not ready for a full class, there are a number of dances hosted by the couple that are open to anyone. And while not everyone knows how to couple dance opportunity to learn is certainly present.

“The last dance we had we did an impromptu class in the middle of it,” said Mullins.

So, whether or not you want to dance for fun or competitively Troy-Hayner Cultural Center is just the place for you to put on your dancing shoes.

Register for dance classes at Troy-Hayner Cultural Center at 301 W. Main Street. For more information, call 937.339.0457 or visit www.troyhayner.org/dance.html.

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Megan Garrison grew up in the small town of Lampasas, Texas, spending her time immersed in Ernest Hemingway novels and dreaming of being a journalist one day. Now she attends the University of Dayton and is hard at work studying to be a war-time correspondent. Though she is very goal oriented and works hard to achieve her dreams she also loves to have a little fun. She DJs her own radio show on Flyer Radio and makes it a point to attend great movies and local concerts. But her greatest love will always be books.

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