Meet Your Neighbor: Susan Dorwart |

Meet Your Neighbor: Susan Dorwart

Amy Edgett/Sierra Sun

I am a ceramics instructor at the Truckee-Donner Parks andamp; Recreation community center. I teach a childrens ceramics class, a parents and me ceramics and adult ceramics class. I also teach Jazzercise, and Pilates in Kings Beach.Have you always liked clay?Oh absolutely. I was a design major at UC Berkeley, and you had to choose an emphasis. I really liked clay/ceramics. Its a forgiving art, and sometimes you come up with something wonderful from a mistake. In the shape, or the glaze.You are also very physical with Pilates and Jazzercise.It helps to keep my mind sharp. And I love the outdoors. Sometimes after a day out cross country skiing, I will even shovel the driveway, just to have a little more time outside.How long have you been in the area?We had a second home here in the 80s, and moved here full time in the 90s.What brought you here for good?My husband and I build houses. We had remodeled our home in the Bay Area, then it was damaged in a slide, then we had to rebuild after the Oakland fire. It was kind of enough. And [at that time] it was affordable to buy land, build and sell up here. We also ski and bike. Its a wonderful area.Do you have any children?We raised our daughter here, she was very involved with Inner Rhythms, and went to college for dance. She is majoring in communications now, in Southern California.You have several ceramics classes for children. Have you always instructed young ones?I was the art specialist at Truckee Elementary school for seven years, and have been teaching ceramics at the Rec Center for many years.What do the children take away from the class?In addition to ceramics, they learn many things. Sometimes the pieces dont turn out as you planned, just like life. They learn to make the best of it, or get creative in changing their initial design. And if they really dont like it, they are allowed to put it in a bag and smash it. Its a great stress reliever. They take part in caring for the classroom, setting up, and more importantly, cleaning up after themselves. I had two girls who wanted to clean the floor with big sponges. I said, heck, why not? They also get to be a mess. Ive seen them walking up to parents like monsters to give them a hug, arms up to here [elbows} in muddy goo. Being here teaches them more than creative expression, it teaches them life lessons.Tell me one thing your neighbors dont know about you.I was a belly dancer when I lived in Berkeley. The Suns Amy Edgett performed this weeks Meet Your Neighbor interview and photo shoot. Please send suggestions to, subject neighbor.

Adult Ceramics Class: Thursday evenings 5:30 to 8 p.m. Parent and Me Handbuilding Pottery Class: Children ages 3 to 5 years. Thursdays from 9:45 to 11 a.m. Childrens pottery class: Thursdays 3:30 at Truckee-Donner Recreation andamp; Park District. Call Susan at 582-8852 or sign up at 582-7720. Pilates Class: Kings Beach Conference Center, Pilates Mat Class. Appropriate for any age or fitness level. Please bring a mat and $10 drop in fee. Class Monday 6:15 p.m. and Wednesday 10:30 a.m. Call Susan at 582-8852.

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