Cloverlane Mercantile and Events Center in Brush Prairie will host a Zumba Cinco de Mayo dance party on May 5.
Instructor Kim Witherspoon held dance classes at Cloverlane, which was originally called the White Elephant, 10 years ago.
“Kim came to me and she showed me pictures of when she used to teach dance here 10 years ago up in the ballroom, saying she’d love to come back and put something together,” said Cloverlane co-owner DeeAnn Stansbury. “So I told her, ‘yes, let’s try it.’ It sounded great.”
According to Stansbury, Witherspoon told her that when she held classes in the building previously, “there was no heat, there was no insulation, and she could actually see their breath while they were dancing.” Since then, Stansbury and her husband Brett have replaced the windows, added insulation, placed curtains on the windows, and installed a new heater. The couple renovated the building in October.
Stansbury describes Witherspoon as a “ball of energy” who loves what she does. She said Witherspoon makes her dance classes fun so people often want to come back.
“It’s a way that women can get together, do something good for their bodies, and have fellowship, which is also good for your mind,” Stansbury said. “It’s a community (Witherspoon) has. They come to her and they’re not just one-timers. They come and they continue. I think because of COVID, so many people are starved for relationships. I think everybody’s so ready to live again.”
Witherspoon said she hasn’t hosted an event for two years because of the pandemic. She felt the Cinco de Mayo party would be a great way to bring the community back together.
“I’m so excited,” said Witherspoon. “The building is restored. It’s absolutely beautiful and has a beautiful stage. I’m happy to bring our community back together, as well as my students who started with me many years ago. We started in that building and we’re all going to be back there together, so it’s kind of like a reunion too.”
Witherspoon said attendees should expect “a lot of energy,” as she incorporates Latin dance styles like salsa, cumbia and merengue. Beginners are welcome.
Witherspoon said Zumba celebrates all cultures, as the group begins with basic steps and works toward more advanced moves. Fitness variations like lunges and squats are incorporated into the dances.
Witherspoon is also a personal trainer through the National Academy of Sports Medicine for individuals or small groups, and is also a pilates teacher. She’s taught in the fitness industry for 15 years.
“I just teach a variety of movements,” she said.
Witherspoon said she has always loved fitness, and her style of teaching has evolved over the years. She likes to regularly incorporate pilates into her exercises, which can benefit people up to 80 years old.
“If somebody has a knee injury or hip injury, we can still move, we can still exercise, and we can still build strong bones based on what their needs are,” she said.
The Zumba dance party will take place from 6:30 to 7:45 p.m. on May 5. It costs $30 at the door.
Both margaritas and nonalcoholic beverages will be served. The event page can be found online at facebook.com/events/673729787014404/.
Kim Witherspoon’s personal Facebook page is titled “Embrace Your Greatness Personal Training, Fitness Classes & Nutrition.”
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