When you think of square dancing, you probably think of hillbillies stomping around in a smelly barn shouting “Do-si-do,” blue-haired ladies in silly dresses, and horrible times spent in gym classes you hated in grammar or high school, listening to fiddle music while a bored gym teacher read out of a book.
Temple Squares, an LGBTQ square dancing experience is nothing like that! They don’t dance in a barn, or wear silly clothes, and they dance to contemporary music. And the nonprofit organization is offering a weekly Square Dance Mainstream Class, starting Thursday, Sept. 27. For 18 weeks, from 7–9 p.m., the class offers a fun, low-impact aerobic activity in a healthy (no smoking or drinking) environment. And once you’ve learned to square dance with them, you may travel and dance with other clubs all over the world, as well as participate in the annual International Association of Gay Square Dance Clubs Convention, held in a different North American city every year, with over 1,000 dancers in attendance.
The IAGSDC is the umbrella organization supporting gay and lesbian Modern Western Square Dance clubs in the United States, Canada, and Japan. The IAGSDC was formed in 1983 when straight callers decided they would not permit gay or lesbian couples to participate in square dancing. The Gay Callers Association taught gays and lesbians how to call square dancing so that gay clubs would have a person who knew and taught the standard dances to the community.
“Gay square dancing is high-energy dancing,” said Ross Crawshaw-Lopton, caller for the Temple Squares. “We welcome anyone interested in Modern Western Square Dance to give it a try. And another great thing about our group is that it’s not necessary to bring a dance partner.”
The cost of the class is $5 per night or $60 in advance. Classes take place at the Windsor Estates Club House, 2800 S. 3200 West, WVC. To learn more go to templesquares or email firstname.lastname@example.org.