What's Working? A Special Dance for Students with Down Syndrome - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

What's Working? A Special Dance for Students with Down Syndrome

Posted: Updated:
  • More newsMore>>

  • Study: 35 percent in US facing debt collectors

    Study: 35 percent in US facing debt collectors

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 1:25 AM EDT2014-07-29 05:25:07 GMT
    More than 35 percent of Americans have debts and unpaid bills that have been reported to collection agencies, according to a study released Tuesday by the Urban Institute.More >>
    More than 35 percent of Americans have debts and unpaid bills that have been reported to collection agencies, according to a study released Tuesday by the Urban Institute.More >>
  • Teacher hit by train expected to make full recovery

    Teacher hit by train expected to make full recovery

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 12:53 AM EDT2014-07-29 04:53:08 GMT
    Officials at the Smiths Station Fire Department say the victim, later identified as Vivian Martin, was transported to Midtown Medical Center with what appeared to be non life-threatening injuries.More >>
    Multiple sources tell News Leader 9 that a Smiths Station teacher was hit by a train earlier today in Lee County.

    Officials at the Smiths Station Fire Department say the victim, later identified as Vivian Martin, was transported to Midtown Medical Center with what appeared to be non life-threatening injuries.
    More >>
  • Foul play not ruled out in fatal Wilcox County blaze

    Foul play not ruled out in fatal Wilcox Co. blaze

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 12:23 AM EDT2014-07-29 04:23:03 GMT
    Mable Davis could do nothing but watch as flames devoured the home across the street, where her sister, Patricia Nickelson had been staying with her long time boyfriend. He got out of the burning houseMore >>
    Multiple calls and email to the WSFA 12 Newsroom took our news crews to the town of Camden. Two recent deadly fires there have many in the community on edge. The families of the victims want answers.  Are the fires related?  Do authorities suspect arson? WSFA took their questions to county and state officials.
    More >>

Students at A-Marika Dance Studio learn to step, shuffle, and twirl. But owner Mary Ramirez Cook says the real goal is to teach the students to stand proudly on their own two feet.

"We might not end up in Cincinnati Ballet. However, if we end up President of P&G that would be a little better. So I think the confidence that you get performing in front of people is huge," Cook said.

But Cook's impact on the community is bigger. Five years ago she started a free dance class for students with Down Syndrome. But just because they have special challenges, Mary doesn't want her students to be treated specially.

"I do know that it's just as important for the typical students I have as my special needs students as a release. A place to come where they can have fun with one another," Cook said.

The class now boasts forty students and there's a waiting list. Teddy Kremer, 29, thinks that's more due to the socializing than the salsa.

"I love all the people here. I love them so much a lot, and I have great people that I dance with, good, not professional dancers, but they do a good job, and it's fun. I love to come here," Kremer said.

Although Kremer's not a professional dancer, he's beaten the odds. He placed first twice and third in the national ballroom dance competition Dancesport.

When asked if he would dance for the rest of his life, Kremer said, "I think so. Yes. It's a good thing to do."

Cook teaches her dancing stars to waltz and tango, but it was her son Matthew who led her.

"Having a son of my own, I know that it's been a gift to me because I never would have gone down this road had I not had Matthew to put me down this road. it's been a huge experience. And I hope it continues to grow," Cook said.

For all she's done for Cincinnati families, and her own, Cook will never lack a dancing partner.

- Stephanie Woods@

@

@

@

Powered by WorldNow