MAPLEWOOD, NJ – Village officials turned out to officially welcome a new business to Springfield Avenue with a ribbon-cutting ceremony: Viva Z Club, a Zumba studio owned by Lidia Kendall-Miller.

“Viva Z Club is the only dedicated Zumba studio in the region,” Kendall-Miller said.  “Some gyms might offer an occasional Zumba class in a back room, but we bring it front and center.”

Indeed, the facility is dominated by a large studio room with mirrored walls and a pumping sound system.  Zumba is a dance-based fitness method that more closely resembles a dance party than an exercise session.

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Kendall-Miller said that she will lead some classes herself, but that she will also bring in popular Zumba instructors from around the area as well.  She notes that some local instructors have a loyal following because participants connect with their particular style of running a class, and Viva Z Club will provide them with a consistent place to work out.

“People may choose how they wish to participate,” Kendall-Miller said.  “We offer ‘drop-ins’, ‘class-packs’ or ‘unlimited classes’.”

Kendall-Miller is pleased with the location of her new studio, saying that Springfield Avenue is really turning into a destination for health and wellness related businesses.

Mayor Victor DeLuca agrees. “This is something we have tried to do,” DeLuca said. “This area is now home to personal care, yoga, fitness, nutrition and martial arts companies.  When people think about health and wellness, we want them to think of Springfield Avenue.”

“Maybe they should change the name of the street to Wellness Avenue,” said Lidia’s husband, Mark Miller.  He points out their proximity to Pro Elite Nutrition, East Side Fitness, CKO Kickboxing, Blue Life Karate and more, all on Springfield Avenue.

On the day of the ribbon-cutting, Viva Z Studio was hosting a “Zumbathon” to raise money for the Global Zumba Research Grant to Prevent Breast Cancer.  Participants were eagerly waiting for class to begin and were decked out in pink for the occasion. The event was co-sponsored by Pro Elite Nutrition and Parteaz, two other Springfield Avenue businesses.

Viva Z Club is located at 1874 Springfield Ave., Maplewood; (201) 312-5107;