Square dancing in the USA

Nothing screams rural America more does it? As one of our staff socials we had a square dancing teacher and his wife (who ‘DJs’) come to camp for the night. They guy was in his 80s and had been doing this as a hobby since he was 13 and was still going strong. Talk about dedication! He has been working at our camp for many years, since it began, and comes back every year without fail. He told us that he was sad that square dancing wasn’t a big thing anymore here in rural New York, which was quite sad to hear since he was clearly so passionate.

The unofficial dress code was obviously flannel and braids (but since I clearly haven’t packed for every eventuality I had to make do with a stripy top and short shorts. I did French plait my hair though). I was looking forward to this dance since the start of camp but I wasn’t expecting to enjoy it as much as I did; I half expected it to be cringeworthy and awkward- at least at the start- but it was far from it. From the get go people threw themselves into it, practicing before everybody got there and partnering up with people they don’t usually interact with. Somewhere in-between swinging our partners round and do-si-doing we had a food break (three huge subs and soda), and a chance to get some energy back. Afterwards we got back into it by dancing to cotton eyed joe (with the the guy being astounded that we’ve heard of this song over in Europe) before a very energetic and tiring line dance.

Towards the end every song was the last song, but six last songs later it was eventually over. We were all sweaty messes by the end but I had an absolute blast!

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