PLEASANTVILLE, N.Y. - For Amy Olin, music and dance are a part of life. A teacher with Musical Munchkins for 15 years, Olin has also been raising funds for the American Cancer Society's Making Strides Walk for the Cure for a decade. The past couple of years she has done so by bringing ZUMBA® to the opening ceremonies of the walk in Westchester.
“Dance is my first love,” Olin said, explaining that she was a dancer before she began singing with Musical Munchkins. Now a ZUMBA® instructor as well, Olin said, “In 2010, I brought a whole team of ZUMBA® instructors and we led a ZUMBA® warm up for the crowd. It was so much fun.”
The warm up was so successful, Olin and her growing group of ZUMBA® instructors were invited back. This past year, Olin added a ZUMBAthon® to her schedule. “I wanted to bring something else to the table,” she said.
Olin’s passion for the American Cancer Society's Making Strides began with her own diagnosis of breast cancer in 2000. In the past 10 years, she has raised over $60,000 for the cause with her teams, which always include her husband, Bill, and two daughters, Melanie and Ashley.
Olin said she has felt support from both family and friends while coping with her illness. “When I was first diagnosed, it was 'whatever you need,'” she said when talking about her coworkers at Musical Munchkins. “I never felt like my job was in jeopardy.” The director, Eileen Oddo, still supports her teacher’s fundraising efforts, according to Olin.
Miss Amy, as she is known to her preschoolers, said she remains dedicated to Musical Munchkins because she enjoys being part of a very professional educational program and loves working with young children.
“Musical Munchkins is the most fun you can have and still call it work,” she said. “It is the most rewarding kind of job that I could have.”