Club puts you in others? comfort zone

Miriam Arghandiwal

The Salsa Loca Club at Sacramento State is pushing its boundaries this semester and trying new dances like the bachata and the merengue.

Sac State alumnus Felix Barba and senior business major Stanley Sasaki founded the club in March 2007.

Salsa, which is a Latin American dance with its music originating from Cuba and Puerto Rico, creates a very positive and festive environment, Barba said.

The typical meeting begins with a lesson geared toward beginning dancers. After, officers then circle around and assist members in technique.

Mikko Carranza, junior communication studies major and club treasurer, said anyone who is willing to have fun can join.

“It’s a cultural experience because in the Latin American culture, dance is a very imperative part of life. We get to share that with a lot of people where dance is not in their background,” Barba said.

O’Connor Griffin, sophomore psychology major and club president, said the main effort of the club has been to make the salsa community grow.

Salsa dance is important because it teaches not only culture but also valuable life lessons outside of the classroom, said Bren Martinez, junior economics major and club member.

“For me, personally, I never thought I could dance till about three years ago when I took a ballroom dancing class. I finally relaxed enough and learned I can do this, it gave me more self-confidence. That, in turn, has allowed me to do things in my life that I would never do before,” Martinez said.

Martinez said salsa dancing also teaches various values.

“Dancing with others teaches you to respect others because it puts you in others’ personal space. You get to know people and learn to trust them while having fun,” Martinez said.

Amber Hadley, senior art history major and event coordinator for the club, said students can get join the Salsa Loca Club in its spring event from 7:30 to 11 p.m. today in the University Union’s Redwood Room.

“It’s a free event. Instead of dance lessons, we’re just going to have dancing. There’ll be free food and we’ll play some dance games,” Hadley said.

Salsa Loca encourages anyone and everyone to come join, Griffin said, the club meetings are free and no experience is necessary.

“When you go on the dance floor you can end up dancing with anybody. They can come from any walk of life, and as your dancing with them you get to talk and hear their story. This helps advance the mixed culture we have here in the United States. It’s beautiful,” Martinez said.

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