Boogie, Groove & Move to These 5 Dance Centers

If you have active little ones who love to twirl, wiggle and groove, consider putting them in a dance class. Portland is packed with a variety of options from classes for beginning ballerinas to tenacious tap dancers. We’ve collected five different studios and dance centers that are sure to waltz right into your little one’s hearts.


Photo: David Krebs via BodyVox

BodyVox, called the “most popular and internationally acclaimed dance company,” by The Oregonian holds a variety of classes for kids that focuses on helping them develop their dance style while igniting their imaginations as they learn the connection between movement, rhythm, music, and originality. The company is led by Emmy Award-winning choreographers Jamey Hampton and Ashley Roland. They create exhilarating productions that marry dance, theater and film-with a little humor thrown in.

Classes: Kids Dance Camp, Jazzy Hip Hop, My Rising Star, and (possibly our favorite) Move Together Parent and Child.
Location: 1201 NW 17th Avenue, Portland
Pricing: Varies by session, check out their site for early registration discounts and more info!
Contact: 503-229-0627 or email info@bodyvox.com
Online: bodyvox.com


photo: Jason Lander via Flickr

Center for Movement Arts
As soon as we heard that this dance center teaches techniques emphasizing the positive, we were doing pirouettes for joy. CMA’s children’s classes include creative movement, our “Steps” dance exploration series and classical ballet from beginning to advanced levels—plus pointe work. They even have a handy “For Parents” section to let you know about fees, attire and what to expect. The center is a place that teaches by putting positivity above all with a focus on what dancers are doing right through encouragement, love, and acceptance.

Classes: Creative Movement (ages 4 to 6), Steps (7 to 10), plus four levels of Dance Workshop
Location: 1734 SE 12th Avenue, Portland
Pricing: Call to inquire.
Contact: 503-236-1007 or email info@cmadance.com
Online: www.cmadance.com

Portland Parks & Recreation
If you are as proud of where you live as we are consider taking your little ones to our city’s dance classes. Portland Parks & Recreation is a reflection of all we stand for as Portlanders: variety, community, kindness, and an affinity for being eccentric. Offering an array of dance classes for a variety of ages plus parent/child classes, Portland Parks & Recreation helps everyone boogie. With a variety of locations, an easy online schedule and registry (complete with class description and how many spots are left!) this site is a great way for your family to find their groove.

Classes: Beginning classes include parent-involvement (up to age three) and either focuses on balance and coordination or music and fantasy with dance. Older children start classes to learn the basics of ballet and jazz. Pre-ballet, pre-tap and pre-hip hop classes also available, beginning at age four.
Ages: Classes start at 12-months
Location: Greater Portland area
Pricing: Varies, based on class
Contact: 503-823-2525
Online: apm.activecommunities.com


photo: Tommy Wong via Flickr

Portland Metro Arts
Portland Metro Arts is home to dance, theatre, music, and visual arts programs. They focus on helping dancers discover their favorite form of self expression through supportive, quality classes and an emphasis on always being a kid at heart. Their dance program breaks down by the school year and the summer season with performances peppered in.

Classes: Pre-dance, hip hop, ballet, tap, camps / workshops, Nutcracker and performance opportunities.
Ages: Classes begin at 3.5 years
Location: 9003 SE Stark Street, Portland
Pricing: Varies, based on class.
Contact: 503-408-0604 or email info@pdxmetroarts.org

Dance With Joy Studios
It’s no surprise that this studio’s mission is “to be a positive force in your world by adding joyful moments to your day!” They work to enrich the mind, body, and soul through teaching with creativity, excellence, responsibility, teamwork all while honoring each dancers individual learning style and needs. So smile, twirl, and leap on over to this center full of classes for “little toes” to kids.


Classes: Little Toes: dance, movement, and activity Kids: hip-hop, hula, jazz, tap, ballroom dance, creative movement, and more.
Ages: Classes begin at 2 years
Location: 7981 SE 17th Ave. Portland, OR 97202
Pricing: Varies, based on class.
Contact: 503-236-8160 or email info@dancewithjoystudios.com
Online: dancewithjoystudios.com

What dance studios make you and your kids do their happy dance? Let us know below!

— Kris Wilhelmy



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