In this column last February, I wrote about my vision to create a retreat center for dance educators. It had been a dream for me since I launched Project Motivate in 1998, but each time I discovered a property that might work, my attempt to purchase it fell through. But my instinct always told me that if I continued to daydream, eventually the right place would come my way. And it would be at the right time.
So I am beyond thrilled to announce that my dream will finally become a reality. The DanceLife Retreat Center will open its doors to the dance community in the summer of 2012. The location is in my hometown of Norton, Massachusetts, which is approximately 45 minutes from both the Boston and Providence, Rhode Island, airports.
Construction has just begun on a 10,000-square-foot log-and-stone lodge, nestled among enormous New England pines on five acres of land. The center will feature 10 beautiful double/double sleeping rooms to accommodate 20 to 40 teachers for intimate Project Motivate seminars. There will be a 30-by-60-foot meeting and studio space, along with a great room featuring two enormous stone fireplaces. The vast kitchen area, along with several indoor and outdoor gathering places, will make the center an ultimate location for dance teachers to hang out and share the dance life.
Other than in May and June, when dance teachers are in their busiest part of the dance season, the center will host seminars year round. Attendees can enjoy the warm days and cool nights of the New England summer, the blazing foliage of the fall months, and of course the soft, downy snows of winter.
Although I am humbled and honored to host hundreds of teachers and school owners at the DanceLife Teacher Conference, I am very much looking forward to the retreat center atmosphere. Having the chance to work with smaller groups in an intimate setting will mean more one-on-one attention and the likelihood for greater personal interaction and dialogue among the attendees.
In the beginning I will offer two Project Motivate seminars, one for both teachers and school owners and one open only to school owners and managers.
It has become obvious to me that holding tight to what you want to accomplish in life is half the battle when it comes to feeling fulfilled and successful. There may be times when outside influences will discourage us or when it seems that we’ve been dancing down the wrong path, but allowing instinct to be your guide can make a dream become a reality.
I look forward to sharing the progress of the DanceLife Retreat Center over the next several months, and I hope to welcome many of our readers to my hometown for rejuvenation and inspiration.