It's rarely the goal of an aerobics class to leave with fat, but men and women at the Mount Airy Farmers Market each walked away Wednesday night with two jars of butter they churned while dancing their way through a 30-minute workout.
"This is the weirdest idea you've all heard about, isn't it?" organizer Sheri Cates asked attendees at the class.
The butter-churning aerobics class was a creative fundraiser for the American Cancer Society's breast cancer research efforts, according to Cates, who said she got the idea from her sister in New York who attended a similar class there.
For $25, students received two Mason jars full of fresh cream donated by Middletown-based South Mountain Creamery to be used during the workout. At the end of 30 minutes of dancing and shaking, excess liquid was poured out of the jars and fresh butter remained.
Fitness instructor Charles Gilbert volunteered to lead the class when he was approached by Women in Motion. An instructor at the Frederick Planet Fitness, Gilbert said he doesn't teach aerobics classes, so he looked up some Youtube videos to prepare.
"I guess I thought it would be fun," he said. "I'm always up for new experiences."
Gilbert's soundtrack included everything from The Newbeats' classic "Bread and Butter" to Taylor Swift's "Shake It Off" and The Cars' "Shake It Up." His students laughed as they jumped around, with the occasional cry of "I've got butter!" coming up from the crowd as their cream separated.
Planet Fitness donated shirts to all those who attended, in addition to Gilbert donating his time.
Women in Motion member Jennifer Mykytyn said she didn't believe butter-churning aerobics was something that existed when Cates brought up the idea.
"What is she talking about?" Mykytyn recalled thinking.
After shaking her Mason jars and dancing, Mykytyn said she got a good workout on what normally would have been a Zumba night.
"This is just cool," she said.
Mount Airy resident Angie Wali said she learned about the class through Ellie Bonde, a Women in Motion member and owner of the Blossom and Basket Boutique, which donated its storefront area for the event.
"I think it's kind of cool," Wali said. "It's a fun way to exercise."