Students with differing abilities enjoy each other's company for activities and dance party

Published: Feb. 26, 2020 at 8:43 PM CST
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A day of learning life-skills concluded with a dance party.

ESU 16 area schools celebrated students of varying abilities at a gathering in North Platte Wednesday. The students first started their day at the Lincoln County Fairgrounds where they participated in various activities.

"This one in particular is one of the most favorites that the kids have because we spend the morning doing socialization activities, learning how to play games with others, getting along with others, making friends from other schools," said ESU 16 Inclusion and Transition Coordinator, Megan Lantis.

After the festivities at the fairgrounds, the students went to the Holiday Inn Express and Suites where they enjoyed a plated meal and worked on their table manners.

"Lou told us we had to have good manners and chew with our mouth closed and be good kids," said Owen Thorberg, an 8th grade student at Mullen.

After the dining experience, they concluded the day with a dance party at the Holiday Inn complete with a DJ, lights and dancing lessons.

One of the reasons organizers said they continue to host this event each year are the friendships that are formed.

"We have kids, that after these events are over, they want the email of the friend they sat next to at lunch or they danced with in the afternoon and they will email back-and-forth, or of course text, and communicate that way so they make friendships from other schools," said Lantis.

"I'm feeling really excited because I get to meet new people and that's how I like it, I like to meet new people and see how they are different than me and what they have done in their life," said Jaden Hockley a 9th grade student from South Platte High School.