Children perform during a rehearsal for “Spring It Up,” which will be performed May 5. This year, physically challenged youth will participate in the performance. (Pam Harnden/Livermore Falls Advertiser)

FARMINGTON — The dance recital “Spring It Up” will be unique and fun to watch. It will be held at 4 p.m. Saturday, May 5, at the Farmington Community Building and is free to the public.

Sponsored by Farmington Parks and Recreation, the dance program is free for area children aged 2 to 14. Sue Jones has been directing the program for 21 years.

Monetary or food donations for the local food pantry will be accepted. Jones said more than $400 was raised at the Christmas recital.

This year, several physically challenged children are participating. Two youth will be dancing all numbers from their wheelchairs. A third dancer has some mobility and will be performing some numbers without her chair.

“The kids in wheelchairs are having such a great time. It warms your heart,” Jones said.

Sixty-five children have been rehearsing once a week for five weeks. This is the biggest group ever with 15 in the 2- to 3-year-old age group, Jones said.

Jones said the rehearsals are fast paced. The kids follow her movements. Jones fits the dance steps to the ability level of the children so anyone can participate.

“I’m so proud of them,” she said.

Jones is assisted by her daughter, Abigail Howell, who was “born into the program.”

“She’s been teaching, helping and dancing her whole life,” Jones said.

Also assisting are Caitlyn Cassidy and Sydney Fletcher. Others plus the older dancers help too.

“The kids jump in, do whatever is asked of them. They’re very good about it,” Jones said. 

Four years ago Jones saw Grace LaPoint sitting on a bench. The 4-year old was “dancing” while a ukulele played nearby.

“That’s how it all got started. Her grandmother said Grace couldn’t dance as she used a wheelchair. I said she could,” Jones said.

“Grace has grown so much. Dancing has had such a huge impact on her. She’s opened the doors to everybody,” Jones said.

Jones is dedicating the dance program to Grace.

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Children perform during a rehearsal for “Spring It Up” at the Farmington Community Center. This year, several physically challenged youth are participating. (Pam Harnden/Livermore Falls Advertiser)

Children perform during a rehearsal for “Spring It Up” at the Farmington Community Center. This year, several physically challenged youth are participating. (Pam Harnden/Livermore Falls Advertiser)

A free dance recital will be held 4 p.m., Saturday, May 5, at the Farmington Community Center. Sue Jones is the director. Seen are some of the younger children during a rehearsal. (Pam Harnden/Livermore Falls Advertiser)


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