“Lead with your knees…lead with your eyebrows! How does your ‘status’ change when you lead with another body part?”

George Maratos guides a group of kids through a theatre improvisation class. There’s lots of laughter and there are frequent excited screams as the kids challenge each other through the series of creative exercises.

Later adults get a chance to have fun too in their own class. There’s just as much laughter in adult version, as brains and bodies are moved to create, to be spontaneous and to play.

For a couple of years there have been murmurings about activities in the space next to the Leaping Feats Dance Studio at 38 Lewes Blvd.

Now, the walls have some exciting new murals and equipment has been appearing — video cameras, computers, turntables, speakers and a piano. There’s also a huge worktable that’s perfect for art projects.

This fall both adults and kids have been playing at theatre sport and practicing improv in the 1500 sq feet of play/art/meeting/music/conversation space. Junior and senior kids’ pop choirs have been showing up, tuning in and singing out. Volunteers have been cleaning and painting and organizing.

The Heart of Riverdale Community Centre is ready to open the doors and invite folks in.

There’s a curiousity about what might be possible — parent and child morning music classes? A noon-hour international knitting circle? Friday movie nights? After-school programs?

Andrea Simpson-Fowler, owner of Leaping Feats, has dreamed of creating a place “where people of all ages come together to participate in programming and to nurture children and youth to grow and develop in positive and healthy ways and experience a sense of belonging by participating in activities that promote healthy lifestyles.”

With the help of some funding from the Yukon Government, through Breakdancing Yukon Society, her vision has become a reality; here is a space for performing arts of all styles as well as visual arts and myriad other endeavors.

The board of directors and supporters of the Heart of Riverdale Community Centre are inviting Riverdale residents and all other interested friends to an open house, on Sunday afternoon, November 17 from 2:00 – 5:00 p.m. There’ll be demos of some of the activities, some art supplies and games to play with, books to browse, puzzles to build.

Come explore the space, share your ideas for programming and resources, enjoy some refreshments, and connect with your community.