Dancing With Denise’s “Happy Feet Dance Crew” spreads joy to nursing homes

30 Aug

Denise Baller of Dancing With Denise has found a charming way to introduce kids to the joy of dancing, while at the same time helping their community.

Denise calls the program “Happy Feet.” It originated several years ago when Denise’s mother, “Miss Tina,” was living at Atria assisted living facility in Penfield. Denise wanted to give the residents a fun and entertaining intergenerational activity, so one evening she invited some of her students to meet at the facility for a “date night” with the residents. The evening was a great success, and the Happy Feet Dance Crew was born.

Since that first outing, “Miss Denise” has taken her students out once a month to visit different local facilities and dance. At the end of the night, the children always share a sweet treat with the residents. In 2019, the Happy Feet Crew grew into an annual summer dance camp, with the students traveling to a different location every morning.

Some of the places the Dance Crew has visited include Webster Comfort Care, where they also spent some time weeding the gardens, and Creekstone Memory Care. They also took a tour of Heritage Christian Stables, where the children cleaned riding equipment, groomed the miniature horses and even cleaned the pasture.

Connecting with the community is Denise’s way of teaching her students how they, and their dancing, can spread love and joy, while learning valuable life lessons. She said,

It’s important to share with the children that life is not perfect and sometimes the jobs we undertake are not things that we love to do. But if you can push through and get to the other side, it makes your heart happy, you become a better person, and most importantly you spread love and joy to make others happy.

If you’d like to meet Denise, learn more about Dancing With Denise and try out a class, stop by her open house on Wednesday Aug. 31 from 5 to 6:30 p.m. at the studio, 1077 Gravel Rd. Click here for more information.

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(posted 8/30/2022)

2 Responses to “Dancing With Denise’s “Happy Feet Dance Crew” spreads joy to nursing homes”

  1. DPD August 31, 2022 at 8:30 am #

    You shine a light on these beacons of hope, joy, love and celebration in our own backyard. Never would Denise’s beautiful & inspiring work have registered in my limited experience, had it not been for your missive. And you provide this service, this education, to us with such profound regularity. Thank you for your kind & wonderful work, Denise. Your kindness and wisdom are healing and strengthening these children, and their friends and parents, too. Your good work spreads much farther than you may realize, and will have profound impact for generations. Thank you Missy, without your words, we would remain sadly ignorant of the good surrounding us; we may have cause for despair if not for the lights you shine on others. May you both be rewarded for your good works.

    • websterontheweb August 31, 2022 at 8:45 am #

      Tnank you so much for your kind words! Denise does great work and I am pleased to be able to share that good news with the community 🙂

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