Feb 26, 2012 - Emily Etheredge, Staff WriterStick your nose in the air. You are ballerinas," instructed Dani Skaggs.
The Riverton High School student taught a group of little girls ballet moves Saturday as they donned their tutus and tiaras for a mother/daughter tea party at the Riverton Branch Library.
The event invited moms and daughters in grades kindergarten through second to pick out their favorite dance attire and participate in a traditional tea party.
Jill Morris brought her 5-year-old daughter, Sage, who twirled around in her tutu excited about the festivities.
"We were at the library checking out books one afternoon and noticed a poster for a tea party where a real live ballerina would show up and teach dance moves. My daughter loves anything to do with ballet, so we were very excited to come to this event," Morris said.
Ballerina Skaggs wore a traditional red tutu as she prepared to give the girls a quick dance lesson, allowing them to make use of the costumes they dressed up in.
"I want the girls to enjoy feeling like a ballerina today and learn a few steps that will allow them to have fun learning ballet," Skaggs said.
After inviting them to stand behind her on stage, Skaggs demonstrated ways to "make your feet smile," have arms resembling a shining sun, and the art of giving a bow.
"Remember to always have your feet smiling and your nose in the air, and you will be set," Skaggs said.
Plies, tendus, first position, and echappes were a few of the dance steps the girls practiced before giving a bow to their moms, who watched in the audience.
The girls were then invited to sit at tables covered with pink and lime-green paper goods, bouquets of tulips, and china teacups with sugar cubes at each place setting.
A menu of cucumber sandwiches, cheese and apples, celery sticks, and heart-shaped cheese, along with peach and raspberry tea was served by employees at the library.
Beth Hanley is new to the Riverton area and was looking forward to bringing her daughters to the event.
"They were so excited to be able to get dressed up and have an official tea party which teaches them etiquette and an element of fanciness that every girl enjoys," Hanley said.
Library children's department Manager Katy Jost was pleased with the turnout of the event with 12 families registering to come.
The library held a Fancy Nancy tea party in the spring of 2011 with a large response and felt that having a theme of ballerinas would be popular for girls of any age.
"We thought it would be a fun thing to have the girls dress up and learn some ballet steps from an actual ballerina, because who doesn't love ballet?" Jost said.
The girls made felt ballet shoe bookmarks, then learned how to make a homemade tutu during craft time.
Through bites of their cucumber sandwiches, sisters Rory and Gracie Johnson informed that they loved the tea party and their favorite part was getting to meet a ballerina.
"I got to learn ballet and feel beautiful," Gracie said.
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