By Lori Lindner
North Liberty Leader
SOLON– Just For Kix dancers kicked it up a notch at the Solon’s high school dance squad’s eighth annual Dance Spectacular in Solon on Friday, Feb. 17. Solon hosted over 200 dancers from area dance, pom and cheer squads, as well as dancers from North Liberty’s Just for Kix program to provide an opportunity for teams and individuals to perform for a packed house.
North Liberty’s Just For Kix is the local location for the national program based out of Brainerd, MN. With over 180 programs across the nation, Just For Kix keeps growing, said North Liberty’s Just For Kix director Kierstin Appleby.
“This year we’ve been crazy-busy, with over 110 dancers and a record class size of 23 in our second grade class,” Appleby said. “The classes we offer are ranked by age, not by experience. This is something that makes us different from the rest of the studios in the area. We want the dancers to have fun and to learn something while doing it.”
Appleby said the North Liberty location currently offers 12 difference classes throughout the week, including Core Kick classes and jazz dance classes for students that range from preschoolers to high school students. Appleby instructs all classes with the help of assistant Emily Janecek.
“It doesn’t matter how much technique or experience our dancers have. They learn something new each and every year and grow as a team,” Appleby said.
The Mini Kix, Middle Kix 1, Middle Kix 2 and Senior Kix teams competed at the United We Dance (UWD) Competition March 3 at Wartburg College’s Sports Center in Waverly.
“The nice thing about UWD competitions is that all performers receive a participantion ribbon no matter what,” said Appleby. “All of our teams performed the best they ever have, but some of the divisions were tough.” The Middle Kix 1 team earned second place and the Senior Kix team was awarded first place for the third year in a row.
“Our motto this year was: “Doing your best is better than being the best,” Appleby said.
The Just For Kix studio is located in the dance area of Rebel Xtreme at 1310 Kennel Ct., Unit C, in North Liberty.