Last night, straight from the hands of Grand Master In Ho Lee, our chief instructor, Mr. Raberge received his 5th-degree black belt. Mr. Raberge has been working toward this goal since he earned his 4th-degree black belt ranking more than 4 years go, and really, since he became a student of Songahm Taekwondo more than a dozen years ago.
If you see him, wish him congratuations on his achieving this great honor!
Now he starts working toward his next goal: 6th degree black belt.
Earlier this year, one of our students won a private lesson with ATA Grand Master In Ho Lee. Along with the private lesson, the grand master will preside over our color belt graduation on Thursday, November 14, and lead a workout for all students. This will be a great honor for us, and everyone is looking forward to it, and frankly, we're all a bit nervous about working out with the leader of the ATA.
The next evening (Friday, November 15), Grand Master will lead three separate workout sessions with local ATA students.
We are humbled and grateful for Grand Master's visiting us, especially during one of our more festive times, color belt graduation. We wish him well in his travels to and from our city.
We've got a couple of special Halloween-themed activities at our school this week:
Thursday, October 31 at 6:00 p.m.: One class: All ages, all belts. It's our special Halloween evening class! Pre-burn off some of the calories from your trick-or-treating. Please wear your regular taekwondo uniforms. Wear your costumes for ...
Friday, November 1 at 6:00 p.m.: Halloween Party! We know it'll be past All Hallows' Eve, but that doesn't mean we can't party! Come in costume and enjoy some refreshments and some takewondo. Bring your friends! Adults are welcome, too!
Our chief instructor and school owner, Mr. Kevin Raberge, will be taking his test to become a fifth-degree black belt. He will test with his form, sparring, and board breaks. He is excited to be so close to achieving this goal of his. He will find out his results in a few weeks.
Our entire school sends him good luck and good skills!
On Saturday, August 24, we will have another Taekwondo in the Park session. We'll be at Antlers Park in Lakeville at 11:00 a.m. All current students are invited, and they are welcome to bring friends, neighbors, past students, and prospective students. The last time we did this, we had more than 50 people, and everyone had a blast!
After the class we'll have a bring-your-own picnic. It'll be a great time to meet and talk with students with whom you usually don't see in your class. Meet the instructors, ask questions, get answers, and have a great time!
EDIT: Please remember to wear your black "weekend" pants and an ATA t-shirt. Our white doboks will gather grass stains like birds to a certain Alfred Hitchcock movie.
Tonight we hold our summer color belt graduation ceremony.
In the category of "a nice problem to have," we have too many students moving to their next belt to hold it comfortably in our school, so we will be in a nearby middle school's gym. About one hundred twenty students will end the evening little closer to their black belts. Some have just started on their journey; some will be at their black belt goal by this time next year.
As with last time, we will have performance stations: One for form, one for weapons, and one for board breaking and self-defense. We are looking forward to all students showing us instructors what they've learned in the past three months.
Yes, parents, whether we like to believe it or not, it's once again time to prepare our children for the next school year. Along with things such as notebooks, pencils, calculators, and clothes, why not give them a new set of skills as well?
We have these free public events coming up in the next couple of weeks:
Sign up and stop by with your kid(s) to give them something for school that can't be found at any back-to-school sale.
This Saturday (July 20), we'll have two events open to the public. You don't have to be one of our taekwondo students to attend.
At 1:00 is our free Bring a Friend, Throw a Friend session. If you come to this seminar, you'll learn how to get someone on the ground and what to do if you end up on the ground. Everyone is invited, but we've discovered you'll learn the most and have the best fun when you bring someone you know.
At 6:00 p.m. is our monthly parents' night out. We will have a NERF war! Kids are encouraged to bring their NERF guns and darts. The cost of this event is $20 for one kid and $30 for a family's worth of kids. Bring your kids; we'll wear them out.
This week is the ATA World Expo in Little Rock, Arkansas. This annual event combines a tournament of champions, business sessions, educational seminars, high-rank testing, an open tournament, and more pomp and circumstance than you can shake a bahng mahng ee at.
We'll have a relatively large contingent from our academy going to this event. Among them, our chief instructor, Mr. Raberge, will test for his fifth-degree black belt. He has been working toward this moment for more than four years. There is no guarantee he will pass his test this week, but he will do his best, and he feels ready.
One of our students will be competing in the Tournament of Champions in traditional weapons and traditional sparring. He earned this by his winning these events at the first-ever North District tournament in June.
Some of our other students will compete in the World Tournament. This is like a regular tournament, but there will be many more competitors, and, as such, a win (or second or third) earns a compeitor many more points and is a great way to start off the tournament year.
And some of our students and families will be in Little Rock to watch their fellow students compete (and to see Mr. Raberge test) and to take in the experience and atmosphere of the ATA World Expo this week.