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Dance the Night Away

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Sweetheart Dance promises to be the first of many for this year
The Arc Nature Coast will be holding a Sweetheart Dance today from 6 pm to 9 pm, Feb. 10, 2023, at their Education Center located at 6495 Mariner Blvd., in Spring Hill.

The Arc Nature Coast provides services and support for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families in Hernando and Pasco counties. The sponsor for the 2023 Sweetheart Dance is IOA- Insurance Office of America. “This is the first dance we’ve had since the COVID pandemic, so all of our staff and volunteers are very excited about it,” said Nancy Stubbs, The Arc Nature Coast Development Director.

Prior to COVID, The Arc Nature Coast held several dances annually, and the Sweetheart Dance promises to be the first of many for this year. The dances are open to the public but are put on as a social event for persons with disabilities of all ages.
Pizza, snacks, chips, cookies, sodas and juice, and other goodies will be available, as well as drawings for door prizes.

The cost per person is just $5.00. Immediate family, The Arc Nature Coast staff accompanying a member of The Arc, and children under 12 are free.
“Our dances are an opportunity for our individuals who may not attend the same programs to get together,” said Nancy.

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Peter Lobato, well known throughout Hernando County as “PJ the DJ,” will be the music host for this event.
“This popular disc jockey is much loved at The Arc Nature Coast,” said Nancy. “He’s been the DJ at our own dances for several years now and does a wonderful job. PJ even gives away two music DVDs at each dance,” she said.
“We are fortunate to have community volunteers that help with this event, but are always seeking more — perhaps if a student is looking for hours towards a bright futures scholarship or if a family would like to come volunteer to dance with the guests or help serve pizza, beverages or help manage spills,” she said.

One longtime volunteer is Linda Reddon, whose niece has participated in The Arc programs. Reddon started volunteering to help with dances years ago. She brings numerous family members with her to help.
“We will have an off-duty police officer there to monitor the event that gives many families peace of mind,” said Nancy. “Staff from The Arc Nature

Coast will be there also, including myself, our CEO, Mark Barry, our Day Services Manager, our Nurse, and staff accompanying our residential members. Four more dances are planned for this year — Spring fling in May, Summer Sizzler in August, Halloween Costume in October, and a Christmas Dance with Santa where everyone receives a gift.

Visit www.thearc-naturecoast.org if you would like to sponsor a future dance. Donations of door prizes or gift baskets for future dances would be greatly welcomed.

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