Bop to the top

Dance is a sport with deep roots in the Owatonna community. For decades, Just for Kix and Jill Hoggard Academy of Dance have trained an abundance of dancers from kindergarten through high school. This year the new high school sport has been bringing together dancers from both studios to practice and compete. In the 1980’s there was performance season, but never a competing team. This extra time commitment on top of practice with their studios has helped the girls improve immensely both individually and as they come together as a team. Captain Sydney Sampson said, “It makes a huge difference when you’re practicing ten hours a week with the high school plus two or three  hours of work in the studio. It makes a lot easier to get better.” Typically new dance teams have two years of performance season as a trial team to gain interest, but because there was such a good outcome and a lot of talent the team went straight to a competition season.

So far the team has participated in seven competitions, and they placed in the top five for three of them. This is great for their first year, and they will hope to see growth in the future. Sharing the duties of coaching are Mrs. Victoria Johnson and Ms. Nicole Burgmaier. Burgmaier said, “Our favorite competition results are when both varsity and JV are able to succeed.” In addition to their competitions, the team hosted the first annual Community Dance Show on Jan. 27 to display dancers from the community and to raise money for the dance programs in Owatonna. The show marked the end of the regular season for the dance team. Their section meet is on Feb. 10 at the Bloomington Kennedy High School. Good luck to the girls as they finish their season off strong.