— By BRIAN SMITH
A new dance studio is opening in downtown Weatherford.
Monika’s Dance Studio has opened just north of the downtown square at 113 North Main St. in the former FitSmith building next door to Twisted Snifter. The venture is a spinoff of the Body Shop fitness studio in Peaster with Monika Shepherd, who has been teaching classes at the Body Shop since Oct. 1, as manager/head instructor.
Shepherd said The Rock, a former dance studio in Weatherford, had closed its doors and moved to Aledo, With a number of students and parents not wanting to make the trip east, Shepherd’s four classes rapidly began to increase in size. While it was “thrilling” to find kids and parents willing to come to Peaster for the classes, size soon became an issue and expansion for the child’s dance classes soon became a reality.
Shepherd said it was decided to have a place in Weatherford that, with some help from her friend at the Body Shop, Liz Carnley has come to fruition.
“Liz has taken me under her wing and just lifted me up with all of this,” Shepherd, who has been dancing since she was 2 1/2 years old, said. “It’s always been my dream to own a dance studio and now I’m doing it. It’s just great.”
Right now, all the youth classes are being held after school with classes for students ages 3-11 at 4 p.m., 5:15 p.m. and 6:15 p.m. on both Mondays and Wednesdays along with a Zumba class Monday and Thursday evenings at 6:30 p.m. More classes will be added to the mix as the need warrants, however, Shepherd said.
“Once we get a waiting list of about five children or so, we will be opening another class,” Shepherd said. “I would be willing to work with home school or preschool kids to possibly have some daytime classes as well during the school day.”
Shepherd said many moms who home school their kids do their shopping during the day and want to have more family time during the evening and not have to go back out for their kids’ classes.
“It would be perfect to allow them the opportunity to do that,” Shepherd said. “We’ll see how it goes.”
Shepherd said she will be working with the kids exclusively with her Zumba instructor Leslie Monzel, being a “very high energy personality who keeps her classes moving and fun.”
For more information on Monika’s Dance Studio and to register for classes, contact Shepherd directly at 817-849-0281.