It looks like Ottawa’s due for another warm summer, and what better way to celebrate the hot weather than with some salsa. And while the tomato-variety often hits the spot, nothing quite satisfies that summery vibe like salsa dancing.
This season, a group of local dance enthusiasts are planning to heat up City Hall’s front lawn with a free event they’re calling Outdoor Salsa at City Hall. Presented by Azucar! Latin Dance Company and Salsa Force, the event promises free dance lessons, live performances and an evening of social dancing set to Latin music courtesy of live bands and DJs.
The event runs every Wednesday night between July 10th and August 28th from 6 to 11pm.
If you’re a little rusty on your feet or are looking for a way into the energetic world of Latin dancing, you’ll have to show up early to take advantage of the complimentary dance lesson, which runs from 6 until 7 each night.
July 10th’s lesson will be Salsa with Jose from Salsa-Force and July 17th’s will be Merengue with Ana and Jeff of Azucar!.
The event takes advantage of the newly installed Rink of Dreams. In the winter, City Hall’s front lawn plays host to thousands of ice skaters, but in the summer months the rink sits dormant, a slab of ovular concrete checked by picnic tables.
“We thought it would make a fantastic dance floor,” says Ana Gherasim, Co-Director of Azucar!. “We’re thrilled that we are able to bring out Ottawa’s dancers to try it out.”
After the introductory lesson, the rink-turned-dance floor will be opened for more freeform dancing, backed by live music. This is an opportunity for experienced and not-so-experienced dancers to socialize and enjoy the Latin atmosphere.
In case of bad weather, the event will move inside City Hall to the Jean Pigott room.
Outdoor Salsa at City Hall runs every Wednesday from July 10th to August 28th. See outdoorsalsa.com for more information.