Devon Prep Ballroom Dancing Club Grows by Leaps

High School students take up ballroom dancing in time for the prom.
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March 26, 2008 - PRLog -- “Dancing with the Stars” has nothing on Devon Prep. Every Friday afternoon young men from Devon Prep and young ladies from Villa Maria Academy and Notre Dame Academy gather in Devon Prep’s Calasanctius Hall to learn the Fox Trot, swing dancing, Jitterbug, Tango and more.  

The students are members of Devon Prep’s popular Ballroom Dancing Club. It was just two years ago that two Devon Prep students asked Math Teacher Dan Callahan if he would consider moderating such a club. A long time dancer himself, he agreed. The rest is, as they say, history.

The Club now averages about 35 students, more than half are girls. Callahan works with them in groups and individually. Recently his wife came to help out with the large turnout. They even had to move to the gym because of the numbers. The students come right after school in their uniforms. They practice separately at first and then the boys and girls dance together.

Devon Prep Senior Steve Carles of Collegeville joined the Dance Club because he thought it looked like fun. “It’s not really hard but it takes a lot of practice,” he said.  “It’s really fun and it’s a great way to meet people.”

Last year the Dance Club participants performed ballroom dancing at Devon Prep’s prom. That got Junior Mark Rafferty interested. “People thought it was great. When I realized there was a club, I wanted to give it a try.”

According to Callahan ballroom dancing is part dance, part sport. “There’s an exhilarating, sports-like feeling of flowing to the music,” he explained.  “Moving and having a complex series of steps to try, makes it a bit of an intellectual challenge as well.”

From the looks of it, the teenagers are up for the challenge. Each week brings out more and more interested students. They are attracted to the romantic beauty and sophistication of ballroom dancing.  And with prom season not too far away, being in this club may be just as important as getting the perfect dress or tux or limo.

Devon Prep is a private, Catholic, college preparatory school for young men in grades six to 12 conducted by the Piarist Fathers. Devon Prep enrolls nearly 300 young men who hail from Chester, Montgomery and Delaware counties as well as parts of Philadelphia. For more infromation contact Devon Prep at 610-688-7337 or visit

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