This fall it’s time to break out the dancing shoes for a series of city-wide dance classes.

Every Thursday evening starting Sept. 1 through Oct. 20, Plaza de Cesar Chavez will come alive with hundreds of dancers from all skill levels and backgrounds. As part of the new CityDance program, the park will host a professional dance instructor to help teach a different style every week. The dance floor opens promptly at 5:30pm, and organizers hope to attract the heavy work crowd that populates downtown.

After an hour of free instruction, attendees are invited to enjoy live bands and practice their new footwork under the stars. Thursday, Sept, 1 will mark kickoff of the city project with salsa lessons led by instructor Eddie Valdez and music by the popular Cuban band, Los Boleros.

Kerry Adams-Hapner, director of Cultural Affairs for the city of San Jose, says that the project was formed in response to an increase in demand for art-focused activation in the downtown area. “It engages people to do more than just watch, but to join and learn,” she said. “I think it’s a really exciting opportunity, it’ll add a lot to downtown.”

A wide variety of dances will be taught from the exciting Latin styles of merengue and Argentine Tango to old-time favorites like the foxtrot, hustle and East Coast swing. Sept. 29 has an exotic twist, with Bollywood dancing led by renowned Bay Area teacher Joti Singh. In addition to the impressive lineup of instructors, music of the event also promises to entertain with groups like Los Boleros, The Cruisetones and The Serenaders.

The night of free dancing comes complete with a beer and drink garden provided by The Fairmont, as well as an assortment of food trucks.

A complete schedule of dates and styles are listed below.

Sept 1.


Eddie Valdez

Los Boleros

Sept 8.

Country Two-Step

Michelle Crozier

Country Cougars

Sept. 15


Mark Scolieri

Alfie and XS

Sept. 22

East Coast Swing

Lesley McIntosh

The Cruisetones

Sept. 29


Joti Singh

DJ Puran Singh of KGS    Entertainment  featuring Gagan  Singh Dholi, Dhol  Player

Oct. 6

Argentine Tango

Conor McClure

Tangonero Trio with Claudio Ortega  and  DJ  Steve

Oct. 13

Fox Trot

Hans Schmidt

The Serenaders

Oct. 20


Michelle Crozier

The Alison Sharino Band