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Village Squares’ Anti-FREEze Dance

Village Squares invited all square dance clubs to join them Friday, January 27, to chase away the winter doldrums at their annual Anti-FREEze Dance. Dancers from the Dalton Gang and Batavia Silver Stars scraped the frost from their windshields and drove across the county to join Cloverleafs, Silver Squares, Grand Squares and Copy Cats, while Gil Porter warmed the hall with his spirited and creative calling. In fact, we’re still trying to untangle ourselves from “men face; grand square.”

Sally Emmel

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RAF Snowbirds Sighted on Space Coast

While we battled alternating waves of rain and snow, Rochester area dancers Bill Lynch, Barb Smith, Jim & Diane Lucey, Barb Green and John Wright got together in Titusville, FL, for the Space Coast Winter Fiesta. They were accompanied by Bonnie & George Phillips, who missed the photo.

The Fiesta featured national callers Tony Oxendine and Jack Pladys, filling two halls with about 35 squares.

John encourages new dancers to continue developing their dance skills so that they can enjoy events like this when they travel to other parts of the country — one more reward for investing in learning to square dance.

We wish our Snowbirds more happy dancing in the comfortable latitudes, but we hope they won’t forget us and will make their way home in time for the spring dancing season in Rochester.

Peter Emmel & John Wright


Village Squares Celebrates Valentine’s Day

The Village Squares reminded everyone that even though Valentine’s Day was past, dancing the next day would be a great way to continue celebrating. Gil Porter’s calling set a lively mood and an amazing assortment of Valentine snacks, all made by Jackie Rogers, impressed everyone. There were not only had heart-shaped shrimp, hot dogs, open-faced tuna sandwiches and a fruit plate, but Jackie even made heart-shaped tacos. Best of all, everything was delicious. Jackie even brought heart-shaped doggie bags so we could take home leftovers. What leftovers? If Martha Stewart could see Jackie’s spectacular spread, she would throw away her spatula and burn her wooden spoons.

Sally Emmel

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Copy Cats Celebrate Valentines Week

Seven squares filled the floor on Saturday, February 18, at the Copy Cats’ Valentines Dance in Penfield. Gil Porter provided a high-energy program that kept everyone hopping. He’s been a busy man filling in for snowbird callers this winter.

Photo credit: Warren Olson

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“Dancer Down” — Emergency Call for Medical Aid

Most of us have at least heard of a situation in which a dancer fell to the floor during a tip. If that happened in your square, would you know immediately how to respond?

Fortunately emergencies are rare in dancing, but when they do happen it can be critically important to get proper attention to the victim as fast as possible.

As you might have already guessed, the square dance community has developed an effective way to get attention and help immediately. It’s a formation that dancers in the victim’s square should use to make their square immediately noticeable to the caller and other dancers. It signals instantly that medical attention is needed in that square right away.

The formation is an arched circle called the ECMA, which stands for Emergency Call for Medical Aid. When a dancer goes down, this formation is used by the other dancers in the victim’s square to save important minutes that would otherwise be lost in the frenzy of waving arms and explanations that cannot be heard or understood across a crowded dance floor.

The ECMA formation cuts through all that wasted time. Here’s how it works.

STEP ONE: When a dancer goes down, a second dancer attends directly to him/her.

STEP TWO: Remaining couples join hands and take a step backward. This allows the injured person and attendant air and space.

STEP THREE: Raise joined hands as high as possible in the form of an arched circle.

STEP FOUR: On seeing this signal, the Caller or hall monitor will immediately place an Emergency Call For Medical Aid.

Once appropriate steps have been taken to address the situation. whether it’s calling 911 or simply helping the victim to their feet, callers and dancers should continue as usual while aid is administered.

Callers, cuers and club leaders should take time to explain the arched circle ECMA signal to their dancers to familiarize them with the procedure and its purpose.

Click HERE to download a PDF version of the sheet that accompanies this article.

Submitted by: Peter Emmel


Copy Cats Celebrate Valentines Day With Their Kittens

Valentines Day this year fell on the Copy Cats class night, so they had a party with their Kittens. Thanks to Jet Thomas, there are photos!

Photos by Jet Thomas

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In Memoriam: Julie Field, January 9, 2017

Julie was born in September, 1943, and died on January 9, 2017. She was an active square and round dancer for many years. In the mid-80s Julie joined the Swinging Singles, which later became Lilac Squares. She was also an active member of Cloverleaf Squares and served on the board in the early 80s and 90s as a refreshment hostess.

Julie was an active member of Silver Squares and Cloverleaf Squares until her death. Her enthusiasm for square dancing was quite evident. She thoroughly enjoyed square dance festivals, promoted them, and proudly displayed her badges and dangles. We will miss her infectious smile and her lovely personality.

Submitted by Elaine Fields

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In Memoriam: Ansel H. “Andy” Shubert

The Square dancing community needs leaders but also lots of faithful dancers and when one of those faithful dancers is gone we miss them. And so we mourn the passing of Andy Shubert who died on December 9, 2016 at the age of 88. In the past Andy and his previously deceased wife Dottie spent many evenings dancing at local clubs, mainly Country Twirlers but in more recent times, Grand Squares. Dottie had serious health problems which limited her dancing but she always encouraged Andy to attend any dance he could, even without her. Before Dottie died, Andy faithfully transported her three times a week to Rochester General Hospital for her life-sustaining dialysis treatments. After she died Andy donated some of her square dance clothes so others could use them.

Andy and Dottie’s blended family was composed of several children, most of whom survive them. Andy was a World War II Army veteran, a member of the VFW and a member and past Master of the Masons. His gentle personality and smiling face will surely be missed.

Submitted by: Carol Ann Stahl