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Spice up your Thursday nights with salsa dancing at Lime Lounge


People of all ages and skill levels enjoy learning the salsa and meeting new people at Lime Lounge’s Salsa Thursdays.

People of all ages and skill levels enjoy learning the salsa and meeting new people at Lime Lounge’s Salsa Thursdays.

As you may have heard in the news, “Dancing With the Stars” returned last week, and we went salsa dancing at Lime Lounge to try out our ballroom skills. Or, more accurately, to check out the ballroom dancing skills of the other patrons.

Lime Lounge pairs with Salsa Des Moines to bring a night of Latin dancing to beginners and pros alike. Come early for free lessons at 8 p.m. and then spend the rest of the night perfecting those moves with Latin-infused club music by DJ Xan from 9 p.m. to close.

On a Thursday night, the bar isn’t exactly overflowing, but the dance lessons start out with a good crowd of about eight men and women. It picks up as more and more people come in, slightly bashful but willing to try something new.

If you’re interested in learning to dance but you don’t have a partner, don’t worry about it. Most guests came in groups of women or men and paired up with strangers once they got into the lessons.

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It starts out a bit like a middle school dance, and the teacher doesn’t shy away from making a joke about it: Girls line up on the left, boys on the right — nobody dare to make eye contact or speak to the opposite sex. That loosens up the crowd a bit.

Surprisingly, there aren’t empty glasses surrounding the dance floor. Most of them don’t even stop at the bar for liquid courage before the lesson, which speaks to the more mature crowd that doesn’t need alcohol to dance in public. You’ve got to give them credit for that.

They begin with simple footwork, a little shuffle the main instructor compares to marching band steps.

The lesson progresses quickly but doesn’t get so advanced that beginners can’t keep up. From the single shuffle, he moves to turns and finally allows his students to partner up. Voila! We’ve suddenly broken out of our “girls over here, guys over there,” adolescent dance status.

While it may seem easy to feel intimidated by the teachers spinning and twisting in the middle of the group, they make sure to go slow enough to keep everyone moving at the same pace.

Lime Lounge isn’t a place to be intimidated. The early lessons are specifically for people who’ve never danced before but want to try something new. From 20-somethings looking for a new activity to 40-somethings looking to let loose for a night, salsa dancing appeals to a variety of crowds.

But if you can’t make it down for Salsa Thursdays (it is the season for Thursday Night Football, after all), there are still great specials throughout the week that you won’t want to miss. Two for $10 Martini Tuesday offers one of the best martini specials around, One Dollar Wednesday takes it to a new level with well drinks for just $1, and Flirtini Friday brings you multiple DJs, a music video dance party and 2-for-1 Flirtini martinis. CV

Lime Lounge
435 E. Grand Ave., 515-333-4643
Tues.-Sun., 4 p.m.-2 a.m.

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