Nothing beats a night out on the town of dancing with your favorite dance partner. One problem: You’ve got two left feet and the rhythm of a rodeo bull. Never fear, a long list of dance classes and lessons are offered on the Grand Strand to help get you on the floor and moving like a seasoned pro. Whether you want a more formal setting and top-notch instruction or you prefer to work it out on the dance floor with an experienced partner, here are five places where you can learn how to cut a rug:
* By the Sea Ballroom & Latin Dance: Learn to cut the rug to the latest Latin beats and the classic ballroom waltzes at this popular studio in downtown Myrtle Beach. Nightly classes ranging from beginner to experienced provide a great learning tool for all skill levels. Professional-level instruction is provided in a setting conducive to learning and focusing on how to interact with a partner so that two movements become one fluid motion. Other classes include the Hawaiian hula and belly dancing, swing, salsa and the shag.
* Coastal Dance Centre: For the highest level of instruction on the Grand Strand, step through the doors of Coastal Dance Studio and let the experienced staff take over from there. Before you know it, you will be dancing the night away to one or more of the many disciplines taught at this professional studio, from jazz, Latin, tap and hip hop to musical theater, tumble, acrobatic and ballroom. No matter your musical or dance tastes, Coastal Dance can provide in-depth instruction to make you a better dancer. Although most classes are geared toward more experienced dancers, newcomers are also welcome.
* Fat Harold's Beach Club: Learn to do the shag at one of the places that started the 1950s and '60s dance craze at Fat Harold's on the corner of Ocean Drive and Main Street in downtown North Myrtle Beach. This historic club helped launch the shag and continues to keep it alive among new generations, offering free shag lessons every Tuesday night at 7 p.m. Guests can learn the basics of the state dance of South Carolina and how to lead/follow a partner. Fat Harold's also offers free country line dancing lessons at 7 p.m. Thursdays. This is a fun way to learn the dance and make new friends without going to a formal dance studio.
* Let's Dance Studio: This studio is located less than a mile from Island Vista in the Pine Lakes Center and is surrounded by a couple of venues where you can put your new skills to the test on the dance floors of Bourbon Street Bar & Grill and Pine Lakes Tavern. Let's Dance offers group dance classes every Monday through Thursday evening. Featuring a wide range of dances, including ballroom, Latin and the shag, Let's Dance also provides instruction for beginners through advanced dancers for only $10 per class, although a free ballroom class is offered at 7 p.m. Tuesdays.
* Rodeo Bar & Grill: For those who prefer boot-scooting and honky-tonking to the ballroom and shag crowd, check out Rodeo Bar & Grill at Broadway at the Beach. Rodeo offers free country line dancing on Sundays from 8 to 10 p.m. with a professional instructor. That's plenty of time to learn the basic steps before the house band cranks it up and the pros hit the floor. You will being dancing with the heel to toe the rest of the night. Come back during the week and show off your new skills on the dance floor.