Volume 25 #6
The Scottish Country Dancer
May/June 2009

Articles in This Issue
The Brief Dance Classes Around the County
Manager's Message The Silver Argyll
Annual General Meeting Recently in Photos
It's Official: RSCDS Southwest Washington State Branch Membership Calendar of Events
The Brief
  • May 27th -- Our first ever AGM? Wha-? See the article for more details!
  • New dates for classes around the County; see the article for the details.
  • Check out the Waltz Class, May 30th! See the Calendar for details.
  • Note: Fort Worden weekend is Sept 11-13, and they are now accepting reservations.
Manager's Message
by LindaMae Dennis

Spring here is so beautiful! This will be my seventh spring here, and I am still totally impressed by how fantastic it is. Such a fabulous progression of flowering trees and shrubs, and all the colors of green. At the moment I am looking out my office window at the Eastern dogwood - the pink kind. The transition from winter, when dancing is something we can do to get some exercise indoors, to spring, when we just feel like dancing, is very interesting. It's like the desire to dance is reawakened, along with everything else.

Enough of this waxing poetic, lets move on to business.

The Annual General Meeting, is coming up on May 27th, 2009. You should already have received a notice via email informing you of the date. We do need a quorum of members to conduct our business, so please try to attend. We will have a shortened dance class. The meeting will follow. This will be the first AGM of the RSCDS, Southwest Washington State Branch! That means that this year, instead of being a member of the RSCDS through the Portland Branch, we can join through our own branch! Well, I'm excited about it, anyway.

Dance classes will continue through June, and then we can look forward to an interesting summer of non-class dancing (not to be confused with low-class dancing). Summer dancing will include the picnic, the Clark County Fair, probably some other of the usual last minute requests for performances, and (very exciting) testing dances submitted for the Just Desserts dance devising contest and book to be published in association with the upcoming 25th Dinner Dance.

Speaking of the Dinner Dance (NEXT April 17th), we have booked The Fairgate Inn in Camas. It's that big beautiful Georgian mansion - bed and breakfast - up on the hill. It has a huge ballroom with polished wooden floors and high ceilings, and is just beautiful. I think it's going to be a magical evening of food, dance, and music. If you have Scottish Country Dancing friends outside the area, this is going to be one of those "Don't Miss" events, so be sure to invite them.

Of course there are several events between now and then that will require some volunteer help - I'm always looking for a good chairperson. It is great to be part of an organization with many willing participants. Please share your ideas and availability with any Teacher or Board Member.

And before I close this dissertation, a word about communicable diseases, especially serious ones like swine flu. I treasure the social aspects of Scottish Country Dancing. The way that we dance - the taking and giving of hands - makes us feel welcomed as part of a family of joyful people. The problem is, of course, that we do touch hands - a lot! To protect yourself and our family of dancers, please be sure to:

  • Maintain good personal hygiene - have clean hands when you come to class and wash your hands again before touching things that others will be touching, such as pens, cups, and especially food.
  • Please do not come to class if you have a sore throat or are ill - we'll miss you, but would rather see you another day.
  • A large bottle of antiseptic hand-cleaner will be provided at each class and event. Please feel free to use it liberally.

Happy, Healthy Dancing!

Annual General Meeting

The Annual General Meeting of the RSCDS Southwest Washington State Branch (formerly Vancouver USA Scottish Country Dancers) will be held at Marshall Center in the Oak/Elm Room at 9:00pm on Wed., May 27th, 2009.


Accept the Minutes from the past AGM - Secretary
Treasurer's Report
Membership Chair - explain and collect Dues
Teacher's Report - Teachers' Representative
Committee Reports, if any - Web/Newsletter, Publicity
Manager's Report
The nominating committee has proposed the following slate of officers:
Chair - Linda Mae Dennis
Vice Chair - Marge van Nus
Treasurer - Van Hord
Secretary - Susan Shaw
Additional nominations may be accepted from the floor.
Old Business
New Business

It's Official: RSCDS Southwest Washington State Branch Membership
by Van-Meter Hord, Treasurer

Our Branch name may be a mouthful but I hope many of you will want to be charter members. RSCDS Headquarters in Scotland has created a discount in membership dues for two adults (both 25 yrs.+) residing at the same address. (There are lower dues for those under 25 yrs.; please contact me if this would apply.) Our board decided to also add this type of benefit to local-only memberships. I call these discounts Family (2 adults residing at same address). The Family memberships will receive individual membership cards but only one copy of the Society's magazine.

Dues for this coming year (July 1, 2009 through June 31, 2010) are:

    Single RSCDS with Local:  $28
    Family RSCDS with Local:  $43
    Single Local Only: $5
    Family Local Only: $7

There is a slight increase in the Single RSCDS with Local dues but otherwise the rates are the same or lower!

There will be membership applications at the AGM on May 27. If you have any questions, please give me a call at 360-699-2174 or e-mail me at: . I am looking forward to hearing from you.

Dance Classes Around the County
by Tom Halpenny

Hello Scottish Country Dancers,

We can enjoy Scottish Country Dance many days a week! You can check out the class info below for a time and place that fits your schedule and location.

The Wednesday Social SCD class now features a weekly evening of social dancing to live fiddle and keyboard. Enjoy Scotland's fusion of lively rhythms and traditional dance.

You can always visit www.vancouverusa-scd.org for the latest SCD activities.

Vancouver, Marshall Center, 1009 E. McLoughlin Blvd
Vancouver-Clark Parks & Recreation 360-487-7100 www.ci.vancouver.wa.us/parks-recreation

Social Scottish Country Dance, Wednesday 7:45-9:15pm, Oak Room, March 11 - 8 wk session
Live Music!

Beginning Celtic Tap, Tuesday 5:30-6:30pm, Oak Room, March 10 - 8 wk session

Vancouver, Firstenburg Community Center, 700 NE 136th Ave
Vancouver-Clark Parks & Recreation 360-487-7001 www.ci.vancouver.wa.us/parks-recreation

Family Basic Scottish Country Dance, Friday 7:30-8:55pm, Aerobics/Dance Studio, March 6 - 8 wk session

East Clark County Community Education 360-954-3838 www.camas.wednet.edu/district/teaching_learning/community_ed.htm

Family Basic Scottish Country Dance, TBD
Contact Geri, 360-834-3757

Battle Ground, Maple Grove School, 12500 NE 199th St
Battle Ground Community Education 360-885-6584 battleground.augusoft.net

Family Basic Scottish Country Dance, Thursday 7:00-8:15pm, Small Gym, May 21 - 6 wk session
Contact Liza, 360-887-1888

Vancouver, Columbia Dance Center, 1700 Broadway

Level 3 Scottish Country Dance, 2nd and 4th Tuesdays, 7:30-8:30pm
Contact Marge, 360-892-4366

Beginning / Intermediate Celtic Tap, 1st and 3rd Tuesdays, 7:30-8:30pm
Contact Linda Mae, 360-609-0623

Kelso, Catlin Center, 106 NW 8th Ave
Longview Parks & Recreation 360-442-5400 mylongview.com/parks_rec

Basic Scottish Country Dance, 1st and 3rd Sundays 7:00-9:00pm
Contact Linda, 360-578-7893
Please call or email before coming, to verify there are no changes in date.

The Silver Argyll
by Van-Meter Hord

Here's a bit about Argyll... I am sure 'The Argyll Square' is about the argyll patterns but here is the story of the "silver argyll". ~ Van. [See http://www.silvercollection.it/dictionaryargyle.html]

A silver argyle (silver argyll) is a gravy-warmer made in various shapes similar to a covered coffee pot with one handle and one spout. The gravy is kept warm by means of hot water contained in a compartment created by a double exterior wall, a compartment created by a false bottom or a central vertical attenuated tube or a central vertical cylindrical tube in which is placed a previously heated iron rod.

John Campbell, the fifth Duke of Argyll, and his wife Elizabeth Gunning, Baroness Hamilton or Hameldon, hated the way that gravy arrived cold to their table from the kitchens of their Inverary Castle during the cold Scottish winters.

The Duke (1723-1806), succeeding his father, the fourth Duke of Argyll in 1770, was the promoter of a new piece of tableware designed to maintain the warmth of the gravy in its vessel. This, with a bit of imagination, was the origin of a warmer called 'argyle' (silver argyle, silver argyll) in honour of the Noble Family that first made a wide use of this device. The first example was a gravy tureen with spouts fitted on either side to hold a piece of hot iron, which maintained the gravy's warmth.

Later, the system was improved upon by the introduction of a jacket to contain hot water or an internal cylinder into which a hot iron was placed.

Argyles were made in a variety of shapes and sizes but most had a rounded body and a small foot, which maximized the capacity for the gravy or sauce.

Usually the spout was placed at the bottom of the container, which allowed the gravy to be drawn off from underneath the layer of fat that settled out on the top.

Recently in Photos
At the Dinner Dance...
Waggle o' the Kilt

Here are a few photos taken at some recent area events. The photo of a line of men in kilts was taken during the song, "The Waggle o' the Kilt", sung by Sandy Mackenzie at the Scottish Afternoon show in early April -- the men are doing their best to illustrate the chorus.

The other pics were snapped at our Dinner Dance at the end of April, and capture some of the warmth, not only of the dancers, but of the venue -- the wood paneling was much enjoyed, acoustically and visually by the musicians as well as the dancers!

...at St. Luke's...
...fun for everyone.

Calendar of Events

May 9: Portland Monthly SCD Dance
7:30pm Tigard Grange, 13770 SW Pacific Hwy., Tigard.
The Program:
    The Diamond Jubilee     IJ   Bk 31 #1
    Light on the Water*     BS   LAD
    The Peat Fire Flame     IR   Drewry, Bon Accord Book of SCD
    Lady Home's Jig         BJ   RSCDS Misc. 1
    Gold and Silver         IS   TAC Anniv. Bk
    Petronella              BR   RSCDS Bk 1, #1
    The Corner House Jig    IJ   Haynes, The Third Carnforth Collection
    Tomalena                BR   San Francisco col.
    Salute to Noel Lillie   IS   Gertz, Portland
    Joie de Vivre           BJ   Bk 39 #2
    The Lea Rig             BIS  RSCDS Bk 21, #5
    Maxwell's Rant          IR   Bk 28 #10
*with the optional ending
bars 25-32:
All advance for 2 bars, retire for 2 bars and dance back to back.
May 16-17: Pomeroy History Farm Herb Festival
20902 NE Lucia Falls Road Yacolt, WA 98675
Crafts, herbs and other plants -- and dancing!
May 27: VancouverUSA AGM
Our Annual General Meeting. After class (about 8:45pm), at the Oak/Elm rooms of the Marshall Center, 1009 E McLoughlin Blvd Vancouver. All members are invited (encouraged!) to attend.
May 30: Waltz Workshop
4:30 - 5:30 PM
Columbia Dance Center, 1700 Broadway
Instruction be Bree Blevens

Registration forms available from the teachers, or contact, Marge van Nus.
June 28: VancouverUSA Summer Picnic
Save the date. More details to come.
Sep 11-13: Fort Worden Weekend Workshop and Ball
Sponsored by the Seattle Branch of the RSCDS, this workshop has been happening for the last 34 years and has become a well known Northwest dancing event. Inspiring musicians and teachers are brought here from afar to support and refine our dancing skills and provide us with some of the best Scottish music for dancing.

Calum Mackinnon, Edmonds, WA
Lisa Scott, Portland, OR
Keith Smith, Ardnamurchan, Scotland
Ralph Gordon, Charles Town, WV
Muriel Johnstone, Courtenay, BC
Keith Smith, Ardnamurchan, Scotland
Pat Coyle, Niagara Falls, ON
Dennis Wood, Nashville, TN
Eileen Hsu, Bellevue, WA
Bill Zobel, Courtenay, BC
Watch your mailbox (or check their website) for applications starting in April. Or if you have other questions, contact their registrar by email at fwreg@rscds-seattle.org .

A gentle hint heard just before a workshop started: "Usually, you aren't learning anything if your lips are moving."

  Do you have an item of Celtic interest you would like to see in print?  
  You can contact me in any of the following ways:  
  By mail:  
  John Shaw
  PO Box 2438
  Battle Ground, WA 98604
  By email:  
  The Scottish Country Dancer is a bi-monthly publication of the Vancouver USA Scottish Country Dancers, a non-profit educational organization. For changes of address, please contact John Shaw, PO Box 2438 Battle Ground, WA 98604, . The editor reserves the right to alter or edit any material submitted for publication for reasons of taste, style, or clarity. All materials for publication should be sent by email to the editor at the address above, preferably in straight text. Deadline is one week before the end of the month prior to publication date. Editors of other newsletters may use or adapt any materials in the Scottish Country Dancer unless a specific copyright notice is included. Please credit author and original source.
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