Volume 29 #1
The Scottish Country Dancer
July/August 2012

Articles in This Issue
Youth Weekend West
A New Dancer(?)
Kelso Highlander Festival
Thank You and Farewell
Our New Officers
Massage Therapist
Hints For Managers of Dem Teams (with tongue in cheek)
Scottish Dance Eye Contact Game: Earn Your Turn
The Mysterious Chain and Turn
Calendar of Events
RIP, Mom
Youth Weekend West
by Holly Gibson

A few months ago when Linda Mae told me about Youth Weekend West I had no idea what I was signing up for. It turned out to be a very fun, energy-filled, and sleepless time in Seattle (sleepless, Seattle, should be a movie title). YWW was started in 2003 by a group of young dancers in British Columbia. The group that puts it on is different every year and this was the first time it was to be held in Seattle. The age range is from 12 to 30ish for the workshop and Sunday morning classes while the Saturday ball is open for everyone.

The four of us, Linda Mae, Rebecca Mintz, Darrick Wong, and I drove to Seattle on Friday, May 4th with a brief stop at the Nisqually Wildlife Refuge where we were especially careful because of the warnings regarding "vicious squirrels." The activities began Friday night with a Ceilidh held at a nearby church. While it was a Ceilidh, there was also a full dance program. Fortunately, every dance was walked at least once so those of us who didn't know the dances had some idea where we were going. The music was provided by Andy Imbrie on the piano and David Knight on the fiddle. Andy said they hadn't played together in five years, but it sounded more like they had been playing together for five years. Having the music right on the floor provided extra energy for all the dances.

Saturday morning classes were held practically under the Space Needle. Except for Terry Harvey, the teachers, Linda Mae and Jim Maiolo, taught an elective and then the three teachers switched back and forth between the advanced, intermediate, and beginner classes. The electives ranged from impossibly tricky dances to Cape Breton step dancing to the Hombo (a traditional Scandinavian folk dance).

By the end of the day, Darrick, Rebecca, and I had picked up a few more friends who were also staying at the Inn at Queen Anne. We all chipped in for a pizza and had a leisurely dinner in the garden, relaxing in the sun and trying to ignore that our feet were starting to no longer speak to us.

The five of us decided we would walk to the ball and then get a cab for the ride home. It was roughly a mile and a half to the hall. Our little group of women in evening dress (with the added accessories of either running shoes, rubber boots, or a red rain coat) and two men in kilts didn't raise too many eyebrows in Seattle. There was the one comment yelled from a car, "Hey, it's Cinco de Mayo!", but that only made us laugh. We also laughed when after trooping up several hills we opened the door to the venue and saw stairs, lots of them, leading up to the floor.

The ball program was filled with fantastic dances and there were very few people sitting out at any one time. The musicians played their hearts out and Andy said later that it was so much fun for them to play for dances, but I think the dancers come out ahead in the fun department with such great music to dance to. For example, during the Ceilidh while dancing Mairi's Wedding one dancer, who will remain nameless, was so caught up in the music that they started reeling across instead of doing half diagonal reels. After the ball we decided just to walk back and that was a good choice because over the skyline was that beautiful full moon in a totally cloudless sky.

Sunday morning it was back to the same dance hall (and stairs) for a full two hours of class ending in The Reel of the 51st Division, complete with an all men's set. Lunch was provided and then it was time to return to real life. But we left with a lot of good memories and new friends. It hasn't been decided where next year's YWW will be but hopefully it will be near enough that I can go again while I still meet the 30ish requirement.

Kelso Highlander Festival
by Sally Bledsoe

I am getting together a crew for the Highlander Festival. The Festival is on the weekend of September 8th and 9th, 2012. Please see the Kelso Washington Highlander Festival at http://www.kelso.gov/visitors/highlander-festival for up to date information.

Saturday I would like a group to walk (dance) in the parade at 10:00am followed by an afternoon of informal dance around the park. Bring a picnic lunch, laze around the shaded park listening to pipes, and watch highland dance and athletic games. There is a playground for little kids, food for sale, booths with clan and other miscellaneous wares. There is Irish dancing on Sunday and music groups throughout the weekend. An e-mail with total plan and a request for people to sign up or show interest is on the way.

Our New Officers
by The Editor

As we begin the new year in our Branch after the elections at the Annual General Meeting, please welcome and support our new board members as they lead and support us in our joyous activities this coming year:

John Shaw, Chair
Theresa Ryan, Vice Chair
Norma Rice, Secretary
Tom Halpenny, Treasurer
Liza Halpenny, Teacher Representative
Hints For Managers of Dem Teams (with tongue in cheek)
by Marge MacLeod Van Nus

The loaded station wagon pulled into the only remaining campsite. Four youngsters leaped from the vehicle and began feverishly unloading gear and setting up a tent. The boys then rushed off to gather firewood, while the girls and their mother set up the camp stove and cooking utensils. A nearby camper marveled to the youngsters' father, "That sir, is some display of teamwork."

"I have a system," the father replied, "No one goes to the bathroom until the camp is set up."

The Mysterious Chain and Turn
by Tom Halpenny

I was recently browsing the figures of The Manual of Scottish Country Dancing that we can download from http://www.rscds.org/images/stories/epub/manual13june.pdf

6.6 Chain formations
This section includes the main chain formations: the grand chain, the ladies' chain, the men's chain, and chain and turn.

One of the figures, chain and turn, was unfamiliar to me. The figure is progressive.

1-2 1st man and 2nd woman, giving right hands, turn three-quarters round
    to finish in a diagonal line with 2nd man and 1st woman.
3-4 1st and 2nd men and 1st and 2nd women, giving left hands,
    turn half-way round to finish with 1st man in 2nd man's place
    and 2nd woman in 1st woman's place.
5-8 1st woman and 2nd man, giving right hands, turn one and a quarter times
    to finish with 1st woman in 2nd woman's place
    and 2nd man in 1st man's place.    

I was unable to recall a dance that contains this figure. The Strathspey Server, http://my.strathspey.org/dd/formation/201/, lists a grand total of two dances that use the figure: Miss Shearer's Strathspey and The Celebration Strathspey. Someone could devise a new dance with chain and turn, perhaps a quick time dance, and boldly increase the number of dances that contain the RSCDS figure.

I think there's an implied impish grin accompanying that last sentence ~ The Editor

RIP, Mom
by The Editor

I'll exercise a little perogative which I hope you'll all find in your hearts to forgive. For those who know, my mother Mary MacKenzie passed away in her home May 30th of this year, as far as those of us who remain can tell, exactly as she wanted it. However, this is not what I want all y'all to think of. She also came with us from time to time and observed our dancing.

This photo was taken at the "222" themed Vancouver spring dance in 2008. One of the things that Mom observed was, "The dancing looks complicated."

In her younger years, she had tried square dancing and, even later in life before her legs wouldn't support such endeavors, her neighbor across the street, Agnes, persuaded her to go to a beginning square dance class at her own square dance club. She found it a little too intense so soon after Dad's passing but it was interesting to me that she tried.

The moral of this story, at least as I declare it, is that we should make contact with observers and, if possible, encourage them to participate with us in the future. Show them your enjoyment of the dance and infect them with the disease!

A New Dancer(?)
by Tom Halpenny

Susan Choquette recently hand-made a kilt for her grandson Alex. Susan is a new dancer in the Battle Ground Scottish Dance class. Perhaps Alex will also be joining us one day!

Thank You and Farewell
by Valerie ( Fleure) Moore

A big thank you to Marge and all the teachers for several years of fun and frolic with Scottish Country Dance. During our time with the local society and RSCDS, we learned a lot and made many good friends. We think of those years as the best in our lives and we feel much richer for having known you and been part of the activities.

With declining health and limited resources, we must say good-bye with heavy (but full) hearts. We simply had too many irons in the fire and have had to choose what we could do with limited mobility. Bart and I are continuing our studies as conchologists and at the recent Shell Show, we won the top award "The DuPont award" and an educational award "The Jean McClusky trophy" plus a blue ribbon for our shell exhibit.

Our family has grown as our aging birds die off. Bart and I adopted a second chance cat last fall, a Manx taily named Merlin. We felt complete until we noticed how Merlin tried to keep us from leaving the house and would be asleep in the same spot when we returned home. So we looked for a companion. We now have two more rescues: an older female named Uno and a young abused tabby named Gandalf. Our family is complete and the cats are bonding well. At least Merlin is no longer lonely.

Think of us once in a while for we will surely be thinking of all of you. Drop a line from time to time and let us know how you are doing.

May the good Lord bless and keep you safe from harm,
And give you rest in the crook of His loving arm.
L'Shalom, Valérie( Fleure) Moore
Let's remember those who where once part of our lives as we all will join them some day ~ The Editor
Massage Therapist
by Debbie Edwards-Wu from Geri Stuart

In celebration of my new location and to thank you for being a loyal client I am running a promotion for new and returning clients. Book your next massage by June 30th and receive a $15 discount off the regular rate of $65 for a one hour appointment.

My Massage Training/Education:

I graduated at the top of my class from Ashmead Massage College in 2006 and am a Licensed Massage Practitioner in Vancouver. I have over 1000 hours of formal training and continuing education training in massage therapy, spa therapy, and aromatherapy, per the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork requirements. In addition, I have a Bachelor of Arts degree with a focus in Psychology and Sociology and a Minor in Business from Washington State University in Pullman.

My Specialties:

I specialize in Swedish, Deep Tissue, Relaxation, and Pregnancy Massage as well as Ballet/Sports Massage and En Point Foot Massage.

About Me:

For the past ten years I have been raising my kids, ages ten & twelve, as a single mom. I volunteer extensively with scouts, several summer camps, and with our church youth groups. I love spending time with my kids! My other interests include designing and editing theater programs for local dance productions, photography, cooking, reading, and traveling. I have had the wonderful opportunity of traveling throughout the US, Europe, Canada, and Mexico. I have lived in various locales, New York, South Korea, Germany, and Switzerland, but have been fortunate to call Vancouver, WA home for the past eleven years.

Making an Appointment:

Please give me a call at 360-904-4226 to set up your massage appointment for the afternoon or evening of Sunday, May 27th or for another weekend in June and/or to purchase a Massage Gift Certificate. Also, please refer a friend or family member. I appreciate your help while I work to expand my business.

Thank you.

Great New Location:

Evergreen Dance Academy is next to Hallmark in the New Seasons shopping center on the northwest side of SE 164th Ave. and SE McGillivray Blvd.

Debbie Edwards-Wu, LMP
Licensed Massage Practitioner
Evergreen Dance Academy
2011 SE 164th Avenue, Suite C-102
Vancouver, WA 98683

By Appointment Only


Scottish Dance Eye Contact Game: Earn Your Turn
by Tom Halpenny

Social eye contact is a quality I have admired about Scottish Dance. In Postie's Jig, I have observed a failure of active dancing couples to make eye contact with the turning corners. We can view the dance at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3stc0bK-9xM

This gives me an idea for a game to encourage eye contact ... Earn Your Turn. If a turning corner observes an approaching active dancer give eye contact, then the corner takes hands and turns the active dancer three quarters. Otherwise, the corner does not take hands but instead rotates three quarters to continue looking at the active dancer, who must then exert greater effort in order to travel around the corner without the counterbalance benefit.

Earn Your Turn!


On with the dance! let joy be unconfined; ~ Unattributed

Calendar of Events

July 15, 2012: Summer Picnic

At William Clark Park in Washougal. Stay tuned for more details.
July 21, 2012: Portland Highland Games

At Mt. Hood Community College, Gresham, Oregon. More information available at http://www.phga.org/
July 22 - August 5, 2012: TAC (Teachers' Association, Canada) Summer School Candidate Classes and Summer School

"Stooges" needed! See Linda Mae to sign up. The event will be held at Portland State University in Portland, Oregon this year!

More registration and other information can be found at http://www.tac-rscds.org/summer-school
September 14 - 16, 2012: Ft. Worden, Evergreen
Save The Date!

Fort Worden State Park on the Olympic Peninsula
Musicians: Elke Baker (Ellicott City, MD) fiddle ~ Lisa Scott (Portland, OR) piano ~ Ginny Snowe (Bellingham, WA) bass
Teachers: Linda Henderson (Alamo, CA) ~ Muriel Johnstone (Berwick, Scotland) ~ Gordon Robinson (Victoria, BC) ~ Ron Wallace (Santa Rosa, CA)

Watch for your Fort Worden application in the mail or check the Seattle RSCDS website at http://www.rscds-seattle.org for a downloadable application.

  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:  

  Martin MacKenzie
  10701 SE Hwy 212 C-7
  Clackamas, Or 97015

  By email:  

  The Scottish Country Dancer is a bi-monthly publication of the RSCDS Southwest Washington State Branch, a non-profit educational organization. For changes of address, please contact Martin MacKenzie, 10701 SE Hwy 212 C-7 Clackamas, Or 97015, . 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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