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Boy with Down syndrome inspires mom to open Fairfield dance studio

A mother of a son with Down syndrome said some people see children with disabilities as having limitations.

Instead, she sees potential.

When Kenya Flowers found out 13 years ago her son, Dehvin, was born with Down syndrome, she said doctors discussed “options” with her.

“The only option,” she told them, “is he’s my son.”

As it turned out, Dehvin, 13, an eighth-grader at Pleasant Run Middle School in the Northwest Local School District, also was the inspiration for a new studio for families and children with and without disabilities to dance to the beat of life’s challenges.

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“He has Down syndrome, but Down syndrome doesn’t have him,” his mother said. “You can do anything if you put your mind to it. Anything is possible.”

Special Techniques, located at 6180 Winton Road, held its ribbon-cutting ceremony Jan. 21, and minutes before Dehvin showed some of his dance moves, then kissed his mother several times on the cheek.

“He’s just the sunshine,” Flowers said. “When you’re around Dehvin, you will smile. Period.”

The classes are open from age 3 to senior citizens and include a wide range of dance styles, from hip-hop to ballroom, she said.

The business shares a space in a strip shopping center with New Birth Ministries under the guidance of Joey and Pat Ferguson, Flowers’ parents. She started thinking about opening a dance studio a few months ago, then she needed “the right people to push me,” she said.

When asked about the goal of the dance studio, Flowers said: “To be a good outlet for everyone. I plan to change the face of things with dance.”

She said everyone — regardless of their circumstances — can dance. She said simply snapping your fingers, clapping your hands, nodding your head is a form of dancing.

“You don’t have to have eyes to dance,” she said. “You can move something.”

The studio with offer classes with students in wheelchairs and a program called, “My Buddy and Me,” geared for siblings or caretakers of students with disabilities, she said.

Becky Popolin brought her 21-year-old daughter, Haley, who has Apraxia, a communications disorder, to the grand opening to see about expanding her physical activity. Haley takes ballroom dancing lessons and enjoys interacting, her mother said.

“She seems to like moving and dancing puts her in a good mood,” Popolin said.

For more information, call 513-851-6392.

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