Dance studio serving people with special needs opens
BRONSON, Fla. -- A dance studio celebrated its grand opening in Bronson. The owners say it will be able to serve people with special needs.
"My main goal is to stand to testament to people with special needs that no matter what the world throws at you, stay true to who you are and just keep going," said Robert Kalpakoff, one of the owners of "Dance Xpressions."
"I was diagnosed when I was 6 years old with Asperger's syndrome. I was told my whole life you'll never carry a long term relationship, I was also told you'll never run or own your own business, you'll never be successful in the world, you'll pretty much have to live with your parents your whole life. I live on my own. I'm very successful," he said.
Kalpakoff and his fiance Ana Schulz opened the dance studio which opens up the stage for people with special needs, and blends them into society.
"For kids and adults with special needs we just invite them in with the general ed kids or adults. So we pair a special needs kid with a general ed kid and they help each other out throughout the classes," said Schulz.
Both Schulz and Kalpakoff are certified to teach kids and adults with all spectrums of Autism.
"People with special needs aren't different. They're just people who process things differently. They see from a different point of view," said Schulz.
Renda Springs, who owns Grabby B's Fudge in Bronson, said, "I don't know of very many places that does special needs therapy." She said supports the growth in the community.
The studio can hold about 25 people per class, with styles ranging from tap, ballet, and competitive dancing.
Kalpakoff said, "We also offer dance therapy classes, music therapy classes, I do vocal coaching, we currently have guitar lessons."
The classes are for anyone, bringing something different to the small town.
"I realize the closest dance studio or any arts studio is in Williston or Chiefland," said Schulz.
Springs said, "I used to have to take my daughter to Gainesville for gymnastics or dance or camp or anything. Bringing something like this to Bronson is going to benefit the kid cause parents can't always run to Gainesville."
Classes begin on the 16th. To register, go to their location at 830 E. Hathaway Avenue, Suite 2 and 3, in Bronson.
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