Step by Step Creations’ Lynn Deschambault and Whitney Dagrain show off some of the salsa dance moves they teach. (Photo by Patricia Leboeuf, Petawawa Post))

Salsa classes add spice to summer

Community News

By: Patricia Leboeuf

Posted on Thursday, August 18, 2016

Salsa isn’t just a dance, it is a way of life; an adage that Step by Step Creations truly believes in.

Founder Lynn Deschambault has added a lot of zest to Petawawa nightlife by offering weekly classes. Until Aug. 31, dancers of all ages and skill levels are invited to take to the floor, learn some salsa moves and just enjoy themselves.

“It is just so much fun, and it really doesn’t matter what ability you have because everybody starts somewhere,” Deschambault said. “That’s why we offer beginning, intermediate and advanced classes.”

Once the teaching portion of the evening has ended, the participants then spend an hour or so dancing socially, and putting their new moves to good use.

“There is just something so infectious about the music,” Deschambault added.

She isn’t a stranger to teaching dance. She offers ballroom dance classes through Garrison Petawawa’ Personnel Support Programs (PSP). She quickly realized there was a lack of salsa classes, and until she created Step by Step Creations, those interested in experiencing Latin grooves had to travel to Ottawa.

“I missed it terribly,” she said.

Even her advanced-level teacher Whitney Dagrain had to make the two hour-trek just for an hour of dance. Now he not only gets to practice his moves, but also share his passion with his students.

“Technically I am teaching, but I’m learning from them as well,” said Dagrain.

Salsa is a great activity for people in Petawawa, and he aims at making every dancer feel like a star. He pointed out that salsa is not only an “expression of the body,” but a good way to stay fit and enjoy something new in a social, non-competitive space.

“Petawawa needed something like that,” Dagrain said. “Petawawa really needed a dance group, and we have 40 people show up pretty much every class we’ve had.”

Initially, Deschambault was worried that expenses to run a salsa class would be too prohibitive, but the Royal Canadian Legion in Petawawa offered her the space for a donated fee during the summer months. This is an opportunity for which she is grateful, as the class fees can be returned for future space. This deal will be revisited at the end of the summer lessons, with the hopes of offering more classes in the Fall and Winter.

Student Jocelyn Dostaler had been searching for a class of this type for the past five years, and absolutely loves the chance to hone her dance moves close to home.

“It is rhythm, it is so much fun and I love all Latin dances,” she said. “... I’m just so happy I found this place.”

The classes at the Legion are held every Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. with classes officially beginning at 7 p.m. Class fees are collected for future expenditures. For more information, please visist