Dance fans have been dazzled my some fancy footwork this week.

Wanganui Competitions Society's dance festival began on Wednesday and finishes today. Young dancers from throughout the central and lower North Island have been competing in a variety of ballet, tap and modern categories.

Organiser Eris Walker said the numbers for this festival were particularly good, with more than 350 entries received.

"That's well up on previous years," she said.

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Mrs Walker said she was particularly pleased that eight dancers were competing in the National Ballet Award.

"This is for really serious dancers only. If the dancer reaches a certain standard they get to compete in the national competition."

This festival's judge is New Plymouth-based dance teacher and examiner Chere McGregor. Ms McGregor taught ballet in Whanganui in the 1970s.

Wanganui Competition Society holds two dance festivals every year. The second one is in October.

The dance festival is held at Whanganui Girls College hall, Jones St, and the competition begins at 9am.