Here was the order I initially was interested in.
1. School with the least extensive website but they had multiple locations very close to our hopefully future home.
2. School that had all their rules and procedures on the website, lots of pictures etc. about a 20 minute drive from areas that JB and I are hoping to move to. College friend goes there.
3. School in the town that we currently live (have lived since birth save college) 40 minutes from where we would be moving but parents still live in current town and would love to see me.
4. School that multiple students attend and has locations by my job. The catch was that their classes were short and very late at night. I would want to be home and not at work for over 12 hours.
5. School that "made the older girls cry". They have a location by my work and they had pictures of girls who were 21 and over going to worlds. Same as number four...would like to be able to go home before class.
So I've heard back from #1 and #3.
#1, which was my top choice, really disappointed me. I wrote this somewhat lengthy email explaining my situation and background, as well as how I wanted to compete and dance at least twice a week. This is what I got back:
You are welcome to start Irish dance. There is an adult class today from 8:00-8:30pm.
The next class is Thurs., April 3rd. There is a new student registration fee of $25 due at
the first class and $25 per class thru May and just wear comfortable shoes.
It was like she read the heading and first line of my email and that was it. She didn't acknowledge that I said I wanted to compete or take more than one class. Then there is the fact that they are half an hour classes every other week. That is not enough to get a decent work out, let alone place at a Feis. I did like that I could pay week by week though. Disappointed because that would have been a convenient drive and the schools colors were green and black. Oh Well.
#3 Would have been my top choice if I wasn't moving, but with my job being between a 45 minute to an hour commute, I really can't stay in a town for it's Irish Step Dancing School. But his reply was exactly as someone described. He didn't just say "yeah we have this class." He welcomed me with open arms. I won't copy the whole email because he was more lengthy than my original was, but I'll paraphrase.
In a nut shell he told me he had two other adults in a Wednesday class. They work on steps and technique and occasionally do ceilis with other girls that are in the class at the same time. (I didn't really have a desire to do that, but I've read that it helps your dancing and you can really improve) He said the other class would be on Fridays and that it would be half price! The tuition for both classes is only about 200 more bucks than I pay for one day a week of gymnastics. He then told me that I absolutely could compete! There are adult competitions everywhere and that with my dance background I probably would be ready more quickly. He made it sound like Adult Comps were the way to go to start and could drop down into &overs when I've had some experience. He also explained the expenses (dresses, fees) which I felt was above and beyond what I asked. He gave me the descriptions of the exact kind of shoes he would want me to get, the prices and where to get them. (50 for soft, 150 for hard. Shhh...don't tell JB!) Finally, he told me to give him a call and we could talk about my plans. The man left a great impression!
So unless #2 really wows me and #4 or #5 are cheap (doubt if, shoreline CT) and worth my being in Stratford until 9 at night...McArdle School of Irish Dance here I come!