After old academy closed, couple opens Soaring Phoenix Family Martial Arts Academy
When Dragonfly Martial Arts closed, Kim and Eric Miller stepped up to ensure a martial arts school would remain in Newberg.
Myself and my husband and our son (who teaches), weve been here seven years as students, Kim Miller said. We didnt want to see this die. Weve been here for so long that this is actually like our second home. Its family.
Eric Miller said a lot of parents were asking that the school not close. So Nov. 27, the Millers opened their own academy in the same 111 N. College St. space, naming it the Soaring Phoenix Family Martial Arts Academy.
For the students that we had, we talked with each parent and asked if they want to continue and were (actually) getting new students, Kim Miller said.
The school has about 40 students, with a few returning.
A couple of students came back when they heard we took over, she said.
But they hope to grow the academy.
When we were training, we had closer to 75 or 80, so wed really like to see it grow, she said.
Eric Miller said the school has been here for 12 years, but its changed in a way hed like to reverse.
At one time the school was a part of the community; it kind of drifted away from that, he said. Wed like to see it go back.
The first event to ingrain the business into the community is in the planning stages.
I know working for the state the governor does a food drive in February and thats to restock the pantries, Kim Miller said. Were already putting that in as something were doing. Any food we collect will go right to (Newberg) F.I.S.H.
Although they said they like the current space, if the school grows as they hope, theyd like to relocate.
We like the location, but if were able to grow well need more space, Kim Miller said.
As for the business end of things, the process is fairly new to the Millers, as Kim works for the Oregon Department of Education and Eric for Intel.
Weve never done this so weve reached out to some friends who own businesses in town for help, she said.
But Taekwondo is something they know plenty about and it will continue to be the main focus of the academy.
We try to take in other martial art techniques that are normally not traditional, Eric Miller said.
The school will offer aikido, tai chi and mixed martial arts, which he said is really more like grappling.
We try to offer a little bit of everything, he said.
For more information, visit www.soaringphoenixacademy. com.