by Marissa Gatto
Cardinal Newman Catholic Secondary Schools Dance Teams, dance courses and Jr. Feeder school dance team wowed the crowd with their performance in the Stoney Creek Santa Claus Parade on December 2nd.
The 61st parade started at 2pm on King Street East in Downtown Stoney Creek. The dancers were street ready and excited to share their movement skills with the crowd.
Members of Newman’s 6 dance teams and dance courses practiced during their lunch to prepare themselves for this event. Mrs. Andrea Ferroni, Dance Teacher & Choreographer along with Mrs. A. Garzo, Jr.Feeder School Dance Team Coach with the Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board put in hard work and dedication to create the choreography for the parade. Both teachers worked after hours with the students to ensure they were prepared for the parade.
The performance consisted of 50 students who are committed to training hard and performing at their finest. The members involved in the dance teams and dance courses are in grades 9-12 and the Jr. Feeder Dance Team students are in grades 4-8. There is a combination of competitive and recreational dancers as well as those who have no formal dance training.
The students danced their hearts out to a playlist with familiar festive songs including Run Run Rudolph and All I Want for Christmas. The weather turned out to be perfect which resulted in one of the largest crowds Stoney Creek has witnessed in a long time. The parade is a great opportunity for students to come together in Christmas Spirit to build relationships with one another.
The students looked uniform dressed with black tights and a CN dance shirt wearing festive Christmas hats. While some of the students performed their routine there were others carrying a sign that said Cardinal Newman Catholic Secondary School Dance Program in hopes to promote the Arts at Cardinal Newman.
The Santa Claus Parade was a great way for the students to earn community service hours and gave the high school dance students the opportunity to mentor the Jr. Feeder School Dance Team as they approach their transition to the high school dance. It was an experience for all of them to work together and become familiar with the dance life in high school.
Mrs. Andrea Ferroni has been working for the Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board at Cardinal Newman for 5 years where she continues to foster growth in the dance courses and extra-curricular competitive dance program.
Mrs. Andrea Ferroni felt that beside competitions, the Santa Claus Parade allows the CN Dancers to give back to the community and build connections and memories. She has grown up performing in the Santa Claus Parade and wanted her dancers to experience what it feels like to work together to bring excitement to others. The community always finds a way to help out and support our school and the Santa Claus Parade was one way to reciprocate this.
“I wanted the students to share their passion for dance and bring joy to others during the Christmas season. When a group of people gather to celebrate dance it creates contagious positive energy. This was evident in the faces of the spectators particularly the children who were cheerfully dancing along.”