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We Raised $20,000 Last Weekend!

June 7, 2023

June 7, 2023

Dear Friends,

On Friday night, we raised $3600 for Mark Day School by hosting a Family Dance Party for the school auction! 

Over 150 students, families and staff/teachers joined us for a sweaty hour of Stop Drop and Dance in the Mark Day gym!

We invited different grades up for each song, including a special song with the Dornhelm and Partin families who are going on the summer Mark Day delegation to South Africa (where we will be leading Stop Drop and Dance classes!), and another closing song called “Brave” with teachers and staff Mr. AJ, Ms. Fernanda, Ms. Klier, Ms. Lucas, and Lao-Shi!

Thank you to everyone who made this event possible!

Thank you to the team of parents - Adeline Liu, Allison Hagey, Anne Kaplan, Katherine Chan, Keala Landry, Kristen Sperling, Laika Chow, Megan Mariani, and Myia Silkaitis - who helped to host the Mark Day dance party on Friday and took care of everything from decorations, balloons, and glow sticks, to tablecloths, refreshments, and setting up our taco bar dinner.

Thank you also to May Haim Kotlarsky and Tammy Ackerman for taking video footage!

The final thank you goes to the Mark Day School facilities team for opening the gym, setting up and breaking down the stage, and helping us clean up afterwards!

We are grateful for all of you who showed up and had an open heart and mind to try something totally different and perhaps out of your comfort zones!

On Saturday morning, we raised $1116 for the Postpartum Support Center!

Being a mom is the hardest job in the world, and especially so when you’re an expectant or new mom!

Maternal Mental Health Disorders are a common public health problem and the Postpartum Support Center is a non-profit organization that provides free evidence-based programs and services concentrating on the well-being of women, their partners, children and support teams.

Thank you to Alison Endemann for celebrating her 40th birthday by hosting this fundraiser and giving back!

Originally Alison said she would only come up front to dance for the first and last song, but thanks to friends and family members who showed up in-person and on-zoom, Alison was encouraged to dance up front for many more songs so that the people online could see her! 🥰

Happiest 40th birthday Alison! Thank you to everyone who donated and attended our celebration!

On Monday morning, we raised $15,371 for the Saint Isabella School Danceathon!

Thank you to Nancy Knievel, who is one of our regular Power With Grace members and is the Co-President of the Parent Club Board at Saint Isabella School, for inviting us to teach a Stop Drop and Dance class for the school danceathon!

At 10am on Monday morning, the entire school came out on the blacktop, and each grade from K-7 wore a different color from the rainbow. We danced to 10 songs and each grade (parents and teachers included!) had a turn dancing up front for a song. We finished with the teachers and staff dancing up front, then everyone got popsicles!

This is the largest amount of donations we have ever raised from a Stop Drop and Dance fundraiser!

All the kids took home pledge sheets last week and asked their friends or family for flat donations or a $ amount per song. With over 200 students participating, and an average of $75 in pledges per student, the total amount raised after our 45 minute danceathon was $15,371!!! Thank you Nancy for coming up with this brilliant fundraising idea!

It's been a busy weekend, but we are grateful for hosting three different fundraisers that raised a total of $20,087!

Happy 50th Birthday Kristen Sperling!

Please join us this Saturday, June 10th at 9:30am in "The Garage" at 1 Thorndale Drive in San Rafael, for a 75 minute Stop Drop and Dance class celebrating Kristen Sperling's actual 50th birthday!

Kristen has requested that everyone wear a "Statement Shirt" - anything that has an inspirational or positive message with large text! She has put together her favorite songs to dance to and her husband and 2 boys will join as well!

Please sign up to join us on Saturday in-person, on Zoom, or on-demand afterwards, and spread the word if you know Kristen, or just come to dance even if you don't know her =)

Don't forget kids are ALWAYS free with a participating parent!

Important June Dates!

The school year is ending and summer is here!

Please mark your calendars for all these important June dates and events. You can always check our website to see the most up-to-date class schedule.

(assume class follows our regular schedule and location if a date is not mentioned below)

Thursday, June 15th 9:30am @UU Marin - 240 Channing Way, San Rafael

75 minute Happy Birthday Stop Drop and Dance class for Alison Van Dis & her daughter Olivia!  Wear blue to represent their love of the ocean!

Saturday, June 17th 9:30am @The Garage - 1 Thorndale Drive, San Rafael
60-75 minute Karin Conn's "Believe Music Heals" Stop Drop and Dance Birthday Fundraiser!  Dress in a hippie theme - flower power, tie-dye or bright colors!

Classes will be at Skate Escape Northgate June 20-22!

Our normal weekday venue, UU Marin, is having their kids camp at the church the entire week of June 19th, therefore we had to find another venue for those 3 days of classes.

We will be teaching in a mini roller skating rink at Skate Escape located inside the Northgate Mall (5800 Northgate Drive, Suite 56, San Rafael).

Since our classes start at 9:30am and the mall is technically not opened yet, the only doors that will be open will be the main doors across from Panera and Kohl's (right next to Ounces Outdoors, which is the turf area).

Tuesday, June 20th @Skate Escape
9:30am 60 minutes Stop Drop and Dance + 10-15 minutes optional Core/Abs/Stretch (bring a mat)

Wednesday, June 21st @Skate Escape
9:30am 60 minute HIIT Camp 30/30 (bring dumbbells and mat)
10:45am 60 minute All-Levels Vinyasa Yoga (bring a mat)

Thursday, June 22nd @Skate Escape
9:30am 75 minute Happy Birthday Stop Drop and Dance class for Sara Rainbolt!  Wear roller girl outfits - shorts, high socks, stripes or rainbows!

Important July and August Schedule Changes

There will be no class Saturday, July 1st but we WILL have class Tuesday, July 4th for a red, white and blue double birthday celebration for Erin Meyers and Jen Gonzalez!

My daughters' school, Mark Day, has had a long-standing partnership with Kliptown Youth Program in Johannesburg and eSibonisweni School in Soweto. Every other year, students and teachers from these two schools visit Mark Day and have home stays with families from our school. Then during the alternating years, Mark Day brings a delegation of 50 students, families, and teachers/staff to visit and volunteer at their schools in South Africa.

My family got chosen as part of the school lottery to attend the delegation to South Africa this summer!

What's even more exciting is that I will be teaching Stop Drop and Dance classes as my "station" or volunteer activity, while other teams will run painting projects, vision screenings, or sports games. Dance is truly a universal language and I am so grateful I will be able to "communicate" and share joy and smiles with the South African kids!

All memberships and classes will be paused for one month from July 16th - August 16th.

Thank you for your understanding and support as my family and I take advantage of this once in a lifetime opportunity!  My intention is to keep on-demand classes and previously-live recordings available for members but will confirm in the next few weeks. 

Our regular schedule will resume beginning on Thursday, August 17th.  

We Are Stronger Together!

It’s weird to think I’ve taught thousands of classes… and yet, I am still always VERY nervous before every class.

I like to believe that those nerves mean it’s because I really love what I do and want to do my best job every single time. So yes, the nerves are a good sign.

It’s also taken me thousands of classes later to learn that it’s ok to ask for help when I need it.  In fact, everything usually turns out better if I can find others who can help.

Every fundraising event that I do is only possible because I partner with at least one (or ten!) other people who share the same vision of spreading joy through dance, uniting community, and giving back in a meaningful way.  

The picture above was taken on Friday with the hosts who helped throw the family dance party at Mark Day School.  How perfect is that quote right above us?

"If you want to go fast, go alone. 
If you want to go far, go together."

- African Proverb

I am so grateful for your support and friendship.  Thank you for reading this extra long newsletter this week =)