In the last few months, three businesses located in the mini-mall on East M-89 have closed down — Calm Waters Yoga, Color Me Tan and Fabulous Curves Consignment — and all three of the locations were then leased by Traci Phelps Studios to make up their new dance studio. Traci Phelps Studios (often referred to as TPS) was established only few years ago and has grown tremendously throughout the Richland community. The owner, Traci Phelps, began her own company about four years ago without having a studio; she started at the Richland Area Community Center and soon grew out of the facility and decided to get their own place.
Not even a full year ago, they leased a building in Richland and turned it into their new studio with plans for staying there for awhile. After the entire building was sold to another business a few months ago, Traci Phelps Studios was told to evacuate the premises in 50 days. This is when the Traci Phelps’ staff leased the three buildings in the Richland strip mall, their only option in the Richland area that could hold all the dancers and that they could find for the time being.
There are many students in the Gull Lake Schools, including the elementary through high school who attend the classes at the studio. With the new location, it is very convenient for the dancers because it is only about two minutes away from the schools.
Phelps, and the dancers are excited to see what this new studio has in store for them and how the next dance season will turn out. The dance studio is so popular in the community because they offer classes for ages two to 19, they have a range of different styles to choose from and have great teachers to make the dancers feel comfortable and able to express themselves through the art form.
Another reason TPS has expanded so much lately was the establishment of a competitive team two years ago. Their third season is now beginning, and in the spring, they will have showcases, attend competitions and nationals in the summer. For people with a passion for dancing, this allows them to further challenge themselves to another level of performance.
“Competition team is designed for dancers who are ready for higher level performance, training and commitment and want to take dance to the next level,” Phelps said.
The competition team began with only 18 members and 10 routines and now has 26 members and 35 routines.
Overall, the new location has been an adjustment for Traci Phelps Studio’s dancers and staff because it is smaller and a different setup than their last location.
“With the most recent studio change, we lost a lot of space so it can be harder to do dance moves or choreography full out,” said senior Gabi Fadden, a member of the TPS dance team for four years. “But our team continues to grow, and we are all very close; it’s like my second family.”
- I'm Sierra Veenkant, I am in 11th grade and this is my first year on the newspaper staff. I am a competitive dancer and dedicate a lot of my time to that. I write the beat reports on the Enviornmental Club for the newspaper and enjoy writing other articles relating to the arts.
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