| I don't claim to be much of a writer, but I will do my
best. So please bare with me.
I have been Dancing and Calling since 1967 and am acquainted
with many folks that have been in it much longer than me. Remember
the days when you could post a flier up and a little ad in the
paper, and 100 or more people would show up for you first Square
What has happened? We brag when we get 2 squares
now. Pretty sad for an American tradition that is really fun
What has changed? Not us! We continue to set up
dances and lessons just like we have always done, on weeknights when
people are working 10 hour days (Men and Women), we continue to
think children will like our old time music, and we insist on making
modern day women wear square dance dresses that take up half the car
We still charge $5 to $10 dollars per couple and the
door, when you can't even spend under $10 at McDonalds. We
tell folks to bring food to potlucks each dance, when they hardly
have time to get the family fed with the demanding schedules that
many modern day folks have now.
Then we expect our Callers and Cuers to have the
latest music and equipment which cost thousands, and only pay them
$25 to $100.00 per dance, if their lucky.
I know that tradition is important. But what
does that mean if the Square/Round Dance Halls are empty? Why
can't we look at the business side of things, and the modern
American family habits. I know I Call a dance to a woman in
comfortable slacks, or music written from a modern rock group, or
getting paid for my actual expenses. That would make me want
to keep on investing my money in the latest and greatest for may
Preteen and Teen groups are probable our worst
downfall. We truly need Callers and Cuers to address this
issue, and develop a modern plan that would keep the interest of
preteen and teens. They want challenge, up-to-date music and
activities that fit their peer groups expectations. That may
require letting our hair down, Call to rock music and square dance
dresses only as a option.
Would these simple changes really hurt us?