Lifestyle

Marysville breakdancers bust a move for upcoming YMCA competition

MARYSVILLE — Close to 30 area breakdancers stepped up Aug. 6 to promote the Marysville YMCA's upcoming 360 B-Boy, B-Girl and Emcee Battle, and they did it with an assist from Marysville Regal Cinemas.

The theater hosted the breakdancing demonstration from 7-10 p.m. during the premiere of "Step Up 3D," providing some pavement for the breakdancers to show off their moves and make people aware of the YMCA's breakdancing competition at Totem Middle School Sept. 25.

Benji Travis started the 360 event at the Marysville YMCA with two of his friends when he was just 18, and eight years later, the 26-year-old is still spearheading the event and recruiting more participants every year.

"We started in 2003 with 150 breakdancers, and we thought that was a lot," Travis said. "This year's goal is 2,000 breakdancers. We'll stagger it, but it's still going to be a packed house."

The doors of the Totem Middle School gym will open at 6 p.m. and the event itself will start at 7 p.m.

"For me, it's about giving back to the community," Travis said. "Breakdancing is a phenomenon for our generation. It attracts a lot of positive people. It's an unorganized hobby with a lot of organization behind it."

Travis noted that no official breakdancing leagues or associations exist, which means that anyone can take part.

"It's equal opportunity," Travis said. "You don't have to pay for gear or membership dues. Everybody can be involved. You just need music."

To cover their costs, though, the $360 event will need some funds. Tickets are $5 for pre-sale admission on the event's website, at www.360bboybattle.com, and $7 for YMCA members or participants 14 years or younger. General admission is $8.

"We had breakdancers as young as 12 all the way up to adults at the theater, which also shows that breakdancing is an all-ages sport," Travis said. "You see it on MTV or hear about it in the cities, but I want local breakdancers to know that hip-hop culture is right here in their backyard, so they don't feel left out."

For more information, call Travis at 206-414-6414.

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