Baltimore Church offering Zumba classes receives multiple noise complaints

A church in Baltimore, which offers bi-weekly Zumba classes, has come under fire with its neighbors due to the noise generated by the outdoor fitness activities.

(Reuters/Stringer)Alberto Perez (C), founder of Zumba Fitness, performs on stage during a meeting in Rimini, central Italy.

The Zumba motivational class, which is considered to have the most number of participants in northeast Baltimore, has always been held in the parking lot of the Koinonia Baptist Church. The church started with its Zumba program in May; however, their neighbors along the Belair Road and White Avenue have started complaining about the noise.

"We have never heard noise like this before. You can probably hear it through the microphone. This is two nights a week from 7:30 until about 9:15 ... It doesn't deserve to be in a residential neighborhood outside. That's not a Gold's Gym back there. That's a church parking lot," said Dan Powers, a resident.

According to Elite Daily,  Zumba is essentially just moving your body to fast (and catchy) music. It's a great cardiovascular activity and it appeals to people who would enjoy dance parties. In addition, Zumba also is a great avenue to develop self-confidence and create a strong community for the church. 

"They're trying to change their lives. Anyone outside in 100-degree weather, exercising, you know, it's something they're trying to do health-wise," said Carroll Smith, deacon of the church. 

Whenever the Zumba classes are done outside in the parking lot, the church's neighbors will report them right away so much so that it has already become routine for everyone. The neighbors will call the police and complain about the noise. They will also contact a Health Department official that will measure the decibels being produced by the Zumba class. 

Douglas Miles, the bishop of the church, admits that there is an obvious contention between the church and the nearby residents. For years, both parties have been at odds and now, the noise made by the Zumba class fueled the fire. Bishop Miles, along with the Zumba teacher, did say that they will accommodate the complaints and definitely develop solutions and suggestions.