The Historic Jonesborough Dance Society was chartered in the Fall of 2005 as a non-profit, educational organization to promote a better understanding and appreciation of American folk dancing, its music, its history and related folklore. HJDS is a group affiliate of the Country Dance and Song Society. We are an all-volunteer organization based in Jonesborough, the oldest town in Tennessee.

We will hold community dances on the first and third Saturdays every month in the auditorium of the Historic Jonesborough Visitors Center at 117 Boone Street. Our dances are open to the public and feature live music in a smoke and alcohol free environment. No experience is necessary. Each dance is taught by the caller for the evening. You do not have to bring a partner. Comfortable shoes and clothing are recommended. Snacks and beverages are for sale in the visitors center. For more information about Jonesborough, please visit their website that can be found in our links section.

New Dance Floor-Built by Volunteers-Funded by many contributors!

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Next Event: Christmas Contra Dance & Waltz Dec 20th

The Historic Jonesborough Dance Society and the Jolly Ole Elf will hold a dance extravaganza on Saturday December 20, 2014 at the Jonesborough Visitors Center, 117 Boone Street at 7:00pm featuring the Asheville band “Eric The Cat” with Warren Doyle calling the dance. Admission is $7, $5 for HJDS members and $5 for full time students. A class for newcomer contra dances will run from 7:00-7:30pm. The dance will go from 7:30-10:30pm. Dancers are invited to bring their favorite holiday desserts for the 9:00pm intermission.

Dancers are invited to waltz from 6:00-7:00pm to recorded tunes. “We do country dance waltz compared to ballroom style waltz” offers David Wiley, event organizer. The folk waltz is quite different; it's sometimes described as a “one-step waltz”. You still do three steps: right, left, right — but the second and third are pretty much on the spot; the first step is where you do most of the travelling. It really isn't forward-side-together; it's step-two-three, step-two-three. If you concentrate on the first step and let the other two just happen, you'll find the whole thing much easier. Turn your shoulders and your feet will follow — it sounds silly, but it's absolutely true. HJDS is planning a series of waltz workshops in the new year to teach country waltz.

Eric The Cat specializes in contra dance music. The four cats include Alan Dillman, fiddle; Wes Maluk, mandolin, tenor banjo, guitar and whistle; Terry Maluk, hand and foot percussion, banjo uke; Karen Gaughan, keyboard. All four Cats have been playing dance music for over 25 years in other bands such as Merriweather, Skeeziks, Hot Sonata, Good & Plenty. Wes and Terry Maluk also have a long history of providing sound engineering for dances, dance festivals, and dance weekends locally and around the county. Eric The Cats music includes a variety of styles ranging from Celtic to French Canadian, to New England to Old-Time and various other influences from evolving traditions. To discover more information about the band, visit their website for current schedule and contact info: http://westerry.com/eric.

Warren Doyle is the co-founder of the Appalachian Folk School located near Mountain City, TN. For many years, Doyle was an educator for area colleges, hiked the Appalachian Trail, danced and called dances all over the country. His folk school houses the Appalachian Trail Institute where prospective trail hikers come for extensive training and orientation before their journey begins. Now retired, Doyle travels far and wide to continue his journey as caller, dancer and hiker. He served on the HJDS board for several years helping to building the dance tradition here and produces a very popular dance weekend in Morgantown, WV called Contradancers Delight Holiday the last week of each year.

For more information on Saturday’s dance or any upcoming events, please call David Wiley at 423-534-8879 or visit www.historicjonesboroughdancesociety.org. Or the Historic Jonesborough Dance Society on FACEBOOK.

Posted by: David Wiley on December 11, 2014