LACONIA — A scholarship named in honor of Elaine Quinn, who for 38 years taught generations of young dancers at the Elaine Quinn School of Performing Arts, will enable the Boys and Girls Club of the Lakes Region to offer Wednesday afternoon dance classes.
Starting next week, hip-hop dances will be taught by Kylee Drew, 16, a member of the competition dance team at Broadway North, who is also a contestant in the Miss New Hampshire Outstanding Teen Program.
Drew says the dance classes are part of her community service project in the Miss N.H. Teen Program and that she is looking forward to getting young dancers involved.
''Everyone loves hip-hop and it's fun to learn,'' says Drew, who has been dancing since she was two years old. The classes will run from 3-5 p.m. and a Hip Hop Dance Team will be formed at the club.
''This is going to be a wonderful addition to the programs we offer,'' said Dana Meade, director of arts and media for the Boys and Girls Club, which earlier this year moved into its new home, the former St. James Episcopal Church on North Main Street.
The scholarship was created by Walter Quinn in honor of his late wife, who died in March of this year at the age of 86, in cooperation with one of her former students, Heidi Noyes-Bourgeois, owner of the Broadway North Dance Studio and Miss New Hampshire in 1998.
''She taught me how to dance and was a wonderful teacher who helped her students build confidence and pursue their creativity through friendship, focus and dedication,'' said Noyes-Bourgeois.
The $10,500 scholarship will be used to provide funds for dance classes for students who would not otherwise be able to afford them and will be accepted at dance schools throughout the Lakes Region. Noyes-Bourgeois said that dance studios like her own will also hold fundraisers to replenish the scholarship funds.
Quinn said that former students of his wife along with parents, friends any supporters of the arts all donated to Elaine Quinn ''For the Love of Dance Scholarship.''
Helping administer the scholarship fund will be Erica Kloetz of Stages Dance of Laconia.
Also on hand for the announcement of the formation of the Hip Hop Dance Team and the scholarship were Laconia Police Chief Chris Adams, president of the board of directors of the Boys and Girls Club, and Christy Dunn, an instructor at Broadway North,
''This is a just great for the club and the kids involved in its programs. They're going to have an opportunity to develop their talent and show the community what they're capable of,'' said Adams, who pointed out that the classes will have a great setting in the former sanctuary at the church with its large floor area and stained glass windows.
Adams said that he was absolutely frightened to death with the prospect of a Dancing with the Stars fundraising event that he took part in but was able to make it through the competition without embarrassing himself thanks to dancing instruction he received from Noyes-Bourgeois.
Dance classes will be offered every Wednesday at the Boys and Girls Club of the Lakes Region thanks to the Elaine Quinn ''For the Love of Dance Scholarship". Dane Meade, director of arts and media at the club is shown seated at left with Kylee Drew, right, dance instructor. In the back row are Heidi Noyes Bourgeois, owner of the Broadway North Dance Studio; Laconia Police Chief Chris Adams, president of the board of directors of the Boys and Girls Club, and Christy Dunn, a dance instructor at Broadway North. (Roger Amsden/for The Laconia Daily Sun)