Irish dance team ready for St. Patrick's Day following fire

Dancers prepare for the busiest weekend of the year at the temporary Beaverton location of Murray Irish Dance Studio. (KATU Photo)

Geraldine Murray knows there's only one way to handle things in show business.

"The show must go on. That’s what it comes down to. The show must go on," Murray said.

Murray is training dancers and coordinating schedules at the temporary Beaverton location of Murray Irish Dance Studio ahead of its busiest weekend of the year.

Murray Irish Dancers will perform at dozens of events around the area, including at Kells Irish Pub and the Kennedy School in Portland, all just over a month after Murray's Beaverton Hillsdale Highway studio was badly damaged in a fire.

"I have some parents reaching out into the community for performances. So we have even more performances and I’m thrilled," Murray said of her fundraising shows over St. Patrick's Day weekend.

A friend helped Murray secure a temporary dance space off of Canyon Road in Beaverton, and thanks to some ingenuity, an old dance floor is now getting regular use.

"So I took it out of storage, put it down; I bought shower pan liner, that costs money, and we put it in and that’s what we’re dancing on, so it’s a nice sprung floor," Murray said.

Now, Murray's dancers, which include both children and adults, are practicing around the clock, something Murray wanted to make sure they'd be able to do after the fire.

"I think it was really scary. I think a lot of the kids saw the pictures, and they thought that’s where I was changing my shoes just the day before. So it really scared them a lot, so I wanted to make sure that we were up and operating very quickly," Murray said.

Murray set up a GoFundMe account as she tries to figure out what her next long-term move will be. But for now, her focus is just on making the most of the busiest weekend of the year with her dancers.

"I love it so much that it gives me the energy to keep going," Murray said.

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