The Wooden Floor

Wooden Floor Depot

Claremontography has an in with someone who works for The Wooden Floor in Santa Ana (just 30 miles south of Claremont). This fabulous non-profit has a mission to empower low-income youth from diverse backgrounds to strengthen self-esteem, self-discipline and a sense of accomplishment through dance, academic, and family programs.

Not only is the Wooden Floor celebrating its 35th year, 100% of another class of seniors is graduating from high school and is enrolled in higher education.

On Saturday the Wooden Floor had an open house to show off its new second location.

Having never seen the Main Street location, Claremontography stopped by (the two spaces are not far from each other).

Students are rehearsing for their upcoming annual concert May 31-June 2.

Costumes are ready.

Wooden Floor Costumes

Wooden Floor

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Sunday in the Garden

Continued lovely weather, sunny in the mid-70s, enticed me to RSABG yesterday. First I looked in on the Acorn Festival and watched a communal dance.

After reading about this Kickstarter campaign, I was excited to see the Game of Thorns in the Container Garden. According to the video, there will be glass thorn sculptures, but I’m guessing they aren’t finished yet, so I enjoyed the real plants, the ones that can hurt.

Contra Dancing at the Colleges

img_5135Attending the contra dance at the Edmunds Ballroom at Pomona College last Friday helped me get closer to doing all 47 things on my 47 Things To Do in Claremont list. If you arrive at 8:00 p.m. don’t expect to start dancing right away. It took about 30 minutes before there were enough people to execute a proper contra dance.

Without going into explanations of this style of folk dancing (this youtube video can get you started), here are some shots of the night’s events.

The live band, Atlantic Crossing, provided the music.

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A nice table of snacks rounded out the evening.

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Toni Carrion

img_5020I do not know how many children have spent time at Village Dance Arts, the small dance studio in the Claremont Village with the big heart. It’s quite a few. It was my daughter’s second home from age 5 until she graduated high school, and then when she returned to Claremont after getting her degree in dance, it became home to her once again as one of the teachers.

The heart and soul of Village Dance Arts is the founder and director, Toni Carrion. If you ask anyone who knows her, they will tell you that she has a heart as big as the universe. She has created a community that has spread throughout the world. Now is the time for that community to gather around her.

Toni has been battling leukemia which has now turned into Richter’s syndrome. Her insurance has not covered treatment in Houston, so her family is raising money to defray medical costs. The latest update on this page says that she is now receiving similar treatment at home, but that money raised will continue to defray medical costs incurred.

47 Things – Winter: Part One

I’m pretty sure it’s winter already in many parts of the Northern Hemisphere. Snowy pictures appear every day in my Instagram feed. The leaves are finally turning here, but it’s chilly at night, so our winter has started. Time to think about things to do this season in Claremont.

Disclaimer: I have not yet done some of these yet, but they are on my to-do list.

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  • 29. Take a child or the child in you to the Inland Pacific Ballet‘s annual production of the Nutcracker.

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Dancing with the Claremont Stars

The very popular campus social dance club – The Claremont Colleges Ballroom Dance Co. – hosted a small dance competition Saturday night. Based on the hit tv series, Dancing with the Stars, the students choose three professors from the colleges to learn a routine with one of the members of the club.

The German Language resident was one of the Claremont Stars, so we had to go watch him perform.

Turns out we knew all three contestants. The first was a new professor at Harvey Mudd who is from Austria. He and his partner danced a tango.

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The second contestant teaches genetics at Pomona College, and we know he wife who teaches physics at HMC. They danced a East Coast Swing number.

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Martin and his partner finished off the competition, but I can’t remember the style of dance, but they ended with quite the flair.

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In the end, Martin and his partner won first place which came with some flowers and a certificate.

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Tanztheater at the Turrell

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The light show at the Turrell Skyspace set the backdrop for what reminded me of Pina Bausch Tanztheater without music. For the most part, the audience sat along the perimeter on the marble benches watching the changing light against the darkening sky. In random fashion, members of the audience became part of the performance as they got up to take photos, looking up at the sky, looking down at the reflecting pool. After returning to their seats, some looked at their phones, some settled in to absorb the slowly-changing colors.

This short clip from the movie Pina reminded me of the Claremont show.