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Step It Up moves to New Richmond

When Jen Halle moved her dance studio, Step It Up, from Somerset to New Richmond this summer, she also moved her family into the new digs.

The dance studio is now located at 1113 Highway 64, which happens to be Halle's in-laws former place of business.

When Wes and Linda Halle closed up shop, they agreed to rent their business office/model home to Jen and her husband Aaron for their place of business and as a place to live.

The downstairs of the former model home is the dance studio, while the remaining two floors make up the Halle's residence.

Working from home makes it much easier for Jen to run the business while taking care of her six-week-old infant, Emma. Jen also has a 10-year-old son, Cody.

"We decided to move from Somerset because we didn't want to have to raise our prices," explained Jen, while bouncing Emma on her lap. "We are only about three minutes away from Somerset here."

Step It Up was owned by dance teacher April Anez for 14 years until Jen bought it from her last year.

"We basically switched roles," Jen said. "April now does most of the teaching and I do the business end of it. April needed more time to devote to her two-year-old twins. It has turned out quite nice."

Jen said a lot of their customers from Somerset came with them when they moved, but there were some who did not.

"We usually have about 100 students and we are down to about 50-60 right now," Jen said. "We expected that loss and we are OK with that. We want to stay small and keep our prices affordable for our customers."

Step It Up offers jazz, tap, ballet, lyrical and hip-hop for ages 3 up to high school. Classes began the week of Oct. 6, but they are still accepting students for another three weeks.

There are a variety of classes from which to choose, and Jen said they are very flexible about scheduling classes to accommodate their customers' busy schedules.

"Our philosophy is that we want the kids to have fun. Create a comfortable environment for parents and keep everything affordable." Jen said.

For more information, call 715-781-1062 or 1063.