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SANTA ANA, Calif. (October 6, 2018) – The Wooden Floor, a nationally recognized creative youth development nonprofit, is preparing for a large turnout of low-income, primarily Latino families, on Saturday, October 20, 2018, as it opens its doors for its Annual Auditions. In order to reach the students who need The Wooden Floor’s services the most, word is spread throughout the community about the opportunity to gain access to The Wooden Floor’s life-changing year-round services.

As a privately-funded nonprofit organization, The Wooden Floor’s year-round holistic model empowers under‐served students through dance, academic tutoring, college and career readiness, and family support programs — all free of charge. 100% of students who graduate from The Wooden Floor immediately enroll in higher education. The organization’s goal is to give even more children in low‐income communities this same opportunity.

“Our Annual Auditions mark the day these students take the first step toward a bright and successful future,” says CEO Dawn S. Reese. “We make a 10‐year commitment to boys and girls in 3rd through 12th grade and on to college enrollment. Most are the first in their families to enroll in higher education and they effectively become change-agents in their community,” she said. A typical family of five at The Wooden Floor has an annual household income of $36,482, which is classified as extremely‐low income in Orange County. Over 150 alumni of the organization are currently enrolled in colleges across the nation, with the majority receiving merit-based college scholarships from The Wooden Floor.

In the past, The Wooden Floor has been forced to turn away 80 percent of children who line up to enroll, due to space constraints. The organization feels called to pursue collaborative growth opportunities to serve more children, and this year opened a second location to now serve nearly 500 students year-round.

Because The Wooden Floor only accepts new students once a year for a limited number of spots, the families come out in force. Many arrive the night before to get the first spots in line, while that is not encouraged. Previous years have seen over 400 students audition, serving as a poignant reminder of the growing need in Orange County and The Wooden Floor’s 35-year history of proven outcomes and impact.

A recent alumna of the organization, Jennifer Hernandez ’13, recalls her audition. “I remember that Saturday morning so vividly because as we drove into the parking lot I was overwhelmed to see the long line of hundreds of other kids who were trying to earn a spot just like me. At that moment, I felt proud of myself for putting myself out there and never would I have imagined that this one small step would lead me towards a journey of success.” Jennifer, the first in her family to go to college, graduated from Chapman University in 2017 with a BA in Business Administration.


Founded in 1983, The Wooden Floor is one of the foremost creative youth development nonprofit organizations in the country. We transform the lives of young people in low-income communities through the power of dance and access to higher education. In Orange County and through national licensed partners, we use a long-term approach grounded in exploratory dance education to foster the confidence and gifts within each child to innovate, communicate, and collaborate – skills necessary for success in school and in life. 100 percent of students who graduate from The Wooden Floor immediately enroll in higher education. Our students become change agents and beacons of hope within their own families, their neighborhoods, our community, and our world.


What: The Wooden Floor Annual Auditions

When: Saturday, October 20, from 8:30am-1:30pm

Where: 1810 North Main Street, Santa Ana, CA 92706

How: Complete information is available in English and Spanish at and by calling 714-541-8314 ext. 128.


CONTACT: Payal Avellan Director of Communications & Marketing 714.541.8314 ext. 119

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