ELIDA — When Lyn Mulcahy opened a dance studio in 1994, she was determined for it to be a place known for building strong and confident performers. Twenty four years later, she said she’s still holding true to that promise.
As a young girl, Mulcahy took dance classes at the Barbara Lynne School, owned by the late Barbara Lynne Lloyd.
Shortly before graduating with a degree in dance education at Bowling Green State University, she was contacted by Lloyd to offer an opportunity to take over the dance studio, as she was looking to retire.
“At the time I wasn’t sure if I wanted to go to a school or a studio,” said Mulcahy. “But I told her I would give it a shot and try it out for a year.”
When Mulcahy opened Lyn’s Academy of Dance on 101 Pioneer Road she started with 80 students. By the end of the first year, she ended up with 150 students.
Over the years, her classes have grown so much that she added on an additional dance room.
“It’s been a great location,” said Mulcahy. “We get kids from all over — Shawnee, Lima, Elida, Delphos, Bluffton, Shawnee and Bath.”
Mulcahy offers jazz, ballet, hip hop, modern, clogging and tap dancing classes as well as tumbling for kids as young as 18 months old to high school age students and occasionally adults.
Each year, students perform in a spring recital and in “The Nutcracker” at Veterans Memorial Civic Center.
Students can be a part of either the traditional/recreational classes or join the competition team.
“Some studios focus just on competition, but I feel like here we do a really good job of treating every student of equal importance,” said Mulcahy.
Mulcahy is grateful to her three full-time instructors: Crista Howard, Gillian Cox and Liz Cozad, who she said all offer something unique to the dance courses.
When the kids are not dancing, instructors conduct special activities with the kids to help boost their confidence and self-esteem.
“Here, we’re more than just a dance class,” said Mulcahy. “We are developing strong, confident and proud young people — both girls and boys.”
Mulcahy said she is blessed to be about to celebrate 25 years of dancing and is excited for the future.
“It’s unbelievable that this is the 25th year. I still feel like I just graduated college. I’m so excited. We have so many different fun things that we are trying to do this year, so I’m ready.”
Reach Camri Nelson at 567-242-0456 or on Twitter @CamriNews