The motto Todd Smith selected for Lincoln Street Salsa's dance events sums up everything he loves about Latin dancing.
"I say, 'Let's dance -- be fit, be social and have fun,' " he said. "Latin dancing encompasses all of that."
The biweekly events hosted by Smith and Jeff Goltiao have returned to a familiar location in Grandview Heights.
Lincoln Street Salsa meets the first and third Saturdays at the Candle Lab, 1255 Grandview Ave., the former location of Dance Plus Ballroom.
"It's the perfect location," Smith said. "Grandview Avenue has so much activity and the Candle Lab still has the original dance floor from the ballroom."
Goltiao was an instructor at Dance Plus Ballroom.
"It's feels great to be back," Goltiao said. "It feels like being home."
Goltiao now owns Dance Edge, a studio on Dublin Road that features Smith as one of its instructors.
Smith started Lincoln Street Salsa four years ago on Lincoln Street in the Short North.
Three years ago, he partnered with Goltiao and moved the event to Dance Plus Ballroom.
After Dance Plus closed at the end of 2016, Lincoln Street Salsa moved to other locations in Grandview and Worthington.
It returned to its original location in September.
Each event begins at 8:30 p.m. with a dance lesson for beginners led by Smith, Goltiao or another instructor.
"Each week we focus on a different style of dancing, including salsa, bachata, merengue, kizomba and cha-cha," Goltiao said. "If you come for five sessions in a row, you'll have an introduction to each of them."
An open dance party is held from 9:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m.
"It's a great setting with the aroma from the candles," Smith said. "What's great is that the Candle Lab has bar service, so it's a really festive atmosphere."
"I love the energy of the dance nights," Goltiao said. "Everyone is having so much fun.
"You'll find people from all walks of life, all races, all backgrounds, all having a good time socializing and dancing the night away," he said.
Between 25 and 30 people typically attend the dance lessons at the beginning of the evening, Goltiao said. More than 100 people participate in the open dance party.
Smith said he enjoys sharing his passion for Latin dancing with others.
"I started the dance events because I wanted a place to dance," he said.
His interest in dancing started "when I was trying to save a relationship," Smith said. "They had an interest in dancing, so I started dancing, too. I started out with ballroom dancing.
"Well, the relationship died out, but my interest in dancing never did."
When Smith discovered Latin dancing, he was hooked, he said.
"It's a lot more social and less rigid than ballroom dancing," he said. "It's a more innate style."
Mollie Flora of Upper Arlington and Karl Wohlwend of Clintonville attended a Lincoln Street Salsa event for the first time Jan. 6
"I love to dance and we've both been to the Candle Lab before," Flora said. "It just seems like a great setting for dancing. I love the aroma of all the candles."
Mukund Mohan, a medical student at Ohio State University, was part of a large group who decided to make Lincoln Street its Saturday-night destination Jan. 6.
"There's about 20 of us who are meeting up here tonight," he said. "It's a perfect way to let off some steam and get away from the stress of school.
"I'm looking forward to learning more about Latin dancing," Mohan said. "It seems like it's a lot of fun."
Admission to the Lincoln Street Salsa events is $12.
For more information, visit lincolnstreetsalsa.com.