Girl Scouts perform dances for badges

HOWLAND — Girl Scouts earn badges in many ways. Recently a group of Scouts learned line dancing and other routines to earn its performance badges.

The group of Scouts — with troop leader Barb Rosenblum — went to Fred Astaire Dance Studio in Howland where the Scouts received free dance lessons to help them earn their performance badges.

Leesha Thompson, dance instructor, said she instructed five Scouts and three adults on line dancing and other dance moves.

Kyrylo Myshakov, owner of the studio that opened last fall, said they learned line dancing, cha-cha, and samba.

Rosenblum said the performance merit badge involves picking a performance skill and developing the material and rehearsing.

“We were thinking of a way to earn a performance badge and thought it would be fun to learn to dance. There are a lot of good things to know about dance. It helps build confidence, increase memory and provides exercise and weight control. There are many positives to learn from dancing,” she said.

Sarah Wilson of Champion said her stepdaughter Sevan Beasley was excited to take part in the activity.

“This is such a confidence booster. When everyone started out they were really slow and do not know what they were doing. After a few minutes of instruction they really did well. Sevan is a born dancer,” Wilson said.

Scout Sarah Rogers of Champion said, “It is cool to learn a new type of dance. This is very different from most of the things we learn and do in Scouting.”

Beasley said it was a different way than what is commonly learned in Scouting to earn a merit badge.

Thompson said working with the Scouts was a fun experience.

“They were able to get out of their comfort zone and do well,” she said.

Rosenblum said the Scouts will receive their badges at a future court of honors awards event.