Learning to dance at the Metro Parks

« Austintown Neighbors


Neighbors | Jessica Harker.Community members attended the Swing Dance class at the MetroParks' Pioneer Pavillion on Sept. 25.


Neighbors | Jessica Harker.Community members attending the Swing Dancing class practiced basic steps with dance parteners Sept. 25 at Pioneer Pavillion.


Neighbors | Jessica Harker.Lynda McPhail, a certified dance instructor, led a group of women during the Swing Dance class at Pioneer Pavillion at Mill Creek MetroParks.


Neighbors | Jessica Harker.Lynda McPhail led the Swing Dancing class at Mill Creek Park on Sept. 25 at Pioneer Pavillion.


Neighbors | Jessica Harker.Instructor Lynda McPhail and a volunteer student demonstrated dance steps at the Swing Dancing class at the Mill Creek MetroParks.



Mill Creek MetroParks recently began offering weekly Swing and Salsa dance classes at Pioneer Pavilion.

The classes, which are $6 to attend each, are run by Lynda McPhail, a DVIDA certified instructor. McPhail owns A Time To Dance studio in Niles and also teaches classes at Avon Oaks ball room in Girard.

“I have everything from scared-to-death-never-tried-it-before to some of my intermediate to experienced level dancers,” McPhail said.

The classes run once a week every Tuesday through September and October.

The Swing and Salsa dance classes will run for five weeks, and then the type of dance will change.

McPhail said that new students are welcome each week, and the class always reviews basic steps before learning something new which is good for new dancers.

“I do what I do with any beginner class,” McPhail said. “If someone misses a week, its fine. The only thing that’s consistent is that we review every week.”

She said that there is a range of students who attend, including people as young as 13 and as old at 85 and with a variety of physical abilities.

This is the fourth year McPhail has been teaching dance classes in the park.

“We believe dancing should be affordable to everybody,” McPhail said. “The people who would be most benefit from dancing they are often the ones who can’t afford to go sign a contract and spend thousands.”

McPhail said that historical dance has been a very popular past time in the area.

“Dance in Youngstown has always been a popular social outlet,” McPhail said. “You cant go to Columbus and find as much dance as we have in this area.”

She said that the social, health and mental benefits of dance are so important they should be available to anyone.

“This class is beneficial to new people who are just getting started and aren’t sure if they are going to like it,” McPhail said.

For information about upcoming events or to register for classes, visit www.millcreekmetorparks.org.

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