August 25, 2021

Dear MDU Families, 

Thank you for a great kick-off to our 24th season of “More Than Just Great Dancing!”. We are now a full week into our season and it has been amazing to see kids and families back in the building.  

As the leader of our studio community, I have the great joy of seeing the excitement of the kids and teacher returning to class. I also have the great responsibility of navigating a continuously changing situation as it relates to Covid-19. 

Since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, MDU has provided clear communication and real-time decision-making. This has allowed us to offer continuous programming with only .0002% incidence of Covid-19 while providing consistent access to the benefits of dance such as physical fitness, social-emotional health, and mental wellness. That’s the joy part!

Now for the responsibility part. At MDU, we make all of our Covid-related decisions based on a variety of inputs, including local and national sources, as well as industry and studio data.  I wake up every morning, search the data, and track the trends. I also consult with our county, speak with other community leaders, and pray for wisdom.  I’m pleased to say that MDU is still doing extremely well in terms of cases as shared above. That’s why we began our fall season by continuing our summer policy of mask recommendation, not a requirement. Our community, however, is not doing as well.  The cases reported yesterday morning were double what they were the week prior and the 7-day average is one we have not seen since February. 

In my Welcome Letter from one week ago, I shared that we would escalate our policies if cases continue to rise. As such, beginning today (8/25/21), the following mitigation measures are being implemented: 

  • Masking required for students in preschool to age 11 while indoors.
  • Masking strongly recommended for everyone 12 and older while indoors.
  • Masking required of teachers while working with students unless in a private lesson. 

We will continue monitoring the situation week by week and will make you aware of any changes.  If community cases continue to rise, potential escalation of policies may include closing the lobby to reduce traffic, further limiting class sizes, greater physical distancing requirements in classes, and/or masking requirements for all ages.

In closing, I fully understand this message will cause relief for some and disappointment for others. Some will think it’s too much and others may think it’s not enough. This is the nature of the times we live in. But, it’s also in our nature to adapt and to support each other.  Our kids are mirrors of our reactions and emotions, so let’s focus on what’s positive!  In a time when our community is welcoming Afghan refugees who have lost all, we have much to be thankful for. Thank YOU for your support!


Misty Lown

Safer Studio Policy Archive
  • 923 12th Ave S, STE 103, Onalaska, WI 54650
  • 608.779.4642
  • 923 12th Ave S, STE 103, Onalaska, WI 54650
  • 608.779.4642

10/26/20 Back to school for many of our students today.

Good Morning!

MANY of our students are heading back to school today for the first time. Some are excited, some are nervous. Parents and teachers included.

I wanted to offer a bit of ENCOURAGEMENT from someone who has been leading a school that has been open continuously since late June. We have had over 9,000 client contacts through our building since that time and only 3 Covid cases (none from our studio and none for 6 weeks). That's less than 1/100th of 1% occurrence.

Miss Shayna Stellflue has been implementing our Safer Studio™ standards to a T, Miss Sandy Averill doesn't let anyone by without hitting the Purell, we have a near-to-full time cleaning routine, all of our teachers are in face coverings and they are providing regular reminders to kids to practice safety. It's been a lot, but it has been critical to keeping our services as a CONSTANT for kids in a hard time.

It IS possible to step back into classroom settings if solid safety measures are in place and well maintained. But, it takes keeping SAFETY in first place. As our kids start going back to school this week, please join us in giving them the CONFIDENCE to navigate their new school-flows and LOVING REMINDERS of the simple things we can all do to help keep each other healthy such as staying home if we aren't well, keeping our hands clean and wearing our face coverings if we are able.

Together, we can. 

Love, Miss Misty W. Lown