Happy Feet, Happy People

Lindsey Lowell, Reporter

Being a senior at the Halloween assembly, I would hear Jeff Robins’, a.k.a. JRob, rendition of “Monster Mash” for the last time. Although I was saddened by this, my heart was uplifted by the workshop and presentation done by The Tap Factor. Their workshop brought together students of all shapes, sizes, and abilities for a fun and inclusive experience.  “It was really outgoing [on stage]. People were able to join in with other people they didn’t usually talk to, to dance, be crazy and show who they are,” said Jackie Bora, Vice President of Best Buddies.

I first found out about Tap Factor this summer in Indiana. The Tap Factor hosted a full-week workshop with people at the Best Buddies Leadership Conference. They had their big showcase at the end of the conference, which inspired Maureen Shea and I to invite them to our school. They have a mission which they’re spreading across the country. “The Tap Factor aims to introduce tap dancing in a way that is very non-traditional,” says Christopher Erk, founder of Tap Factor, “By presenting it in a more general environment, like a school, it allows us to reach out to a variety of different demographics.”

Erk had some very nice things to say about our school, “The school has a very awesome energy to it. It seems very welcoming. The art on the walls is beautiful. People are very friendly in the hallways and very encouraged about us doing our project here.”

After the workshop, I was walking around, and I noticed Brittney Evans tapping her way down the hallway. I asked her if she had fun and if she wanted to keep tapping. She lit up with a smile and giggled with excitement. I brought it up with Erk, and he said, “Since you say that, that gives me an idea [for a new] model [Tap Factor Clubs] is something worth pursuing… We may be moving forward for creating a program like that, that could be sustainable in every location we hit.”

My buddy, Destiny Mason, had a great time at the workshop. She was right up in the front with Erk, having a total blast.  What the Tap Factor is doing, is bringing smiles upon the faces of everyone they meet. They’re creating a forum for people to come together and have fun in a creative way. I’m very grateful to them for visiting our school. I also want to send out a huge thank you to Mrs. Shea for making this happen. Destiny Mason said she had a lot of fun and she was making new friends.