Thompson Valley Stars

Wow, what a fabulous 4-day event ‘Peachfest’ was. It was Penticton’s 11th Annual Square and Round Dance Festival and once again the weather was perfect.

Wednesday afternoon started at 2 p.m. with casual dancing. Merv Meyer of Kamloops was MC. New callers and cuers were encouraged to sign up at this event, to try out their talents.

Wednesday evening began at 7 p.m.  with prerounds (round dancing before square dancing), then mainstream dancing from 8–10 p.m. 17 callers and 11 cuers took turns at the mike, giving the  dancers a wonderful variety of music & style.

There was casual dancing again on Thursday, this time at 9:30 in the morning. Again this was mainstream square dancing with round dancing between tips. (A ‘tip’ is 1 patter and 1 singing  call).

Thursday afternoon from 2 – 4 p.m. the ‘Roundoree’ took place. This is round dancing only, with Phase II (regular square dance level) and also Phase III and some Phase IV round dances  being cued.  These included Cha, cha, Rumba, Fox Trot and phase III Waltz. Nine cuers from all over BC & USA cued 4 consecutive rounds each.

Thursday, Friday & Saturday evenings were much the same as Wednesday, except as the week progressed, each night gathered more dancers.

The ‘Teen’ dance took place on Friday afternoon with Nicholas Brendzy of Burnaby, as MC. It was great to see the young enthusiastic dancers enjoying themselves so much. The ‘Aquaduck’ dance, hosted by Ralph Halsall of Penticton, is square dancing in the water. This started Saturday afternoon at 1:30, in the beautiful Okanagan Lake. There was a lot of laughing and dunking taking place. It was so refreshing to take part in this kind of dancing on such a hot day.

Saturday afternoon portrayed the only ‘Plus’ dance during the entire Festival. This was from 2:30 – 4:30 with Nelson Reeme of Vernon as MC. On the program were 4 callers, 2 from Region 3 & 9 being Nelson Reeme & Merv Meyer (of Kamloops). Cuers from these 2 regions were Regine Anderson & Ken Boyd of Penticton, and Sandy Meyer of Kamloops.

Some of the highlights of this fun filled Festival were the ‘BC Boys’ (Steve Edlund, Ray & Nicholas Brendzy, & Dave Harry); also the well-known talented ‘Brendzy Family’- Ray (Christine), son Nicholas and daughter Caitlyn, who took part in calling together on the stage. Of course, the biggest highlight and surprise for Sandy & Merv Meyer was when they were presented by President Ken Crisp of ‘The BC Square & Round Dance Federation’, with the ‘Sillery Award’ in Honour and Recognition of ‘Outstanding Service to the Square Dance Community’.

Grace & James Chen, who are well known for their outstanding promotion in the Square and Round dance field in Calgary, attended Peachfest and were an instant hit with all the dancers. Diane & Phil Tucker of Penticton kindly accommodated them in their lovely home during the entire festival. The Meyers were honoured to have the Chens follow them to their home in Kamloops to spend the remainder of their holidays in this area.

For more information, including new dancer sessions starting in the Fall, call 250-376-5636, or email: meyerdance@telus.net.

The benefits of the recreation can be explored at:

http://www.thompsonvalleystars.squaredance.bc.ca.html

or: www.TakeMeDancing.squaredance.bc.ca

Also, see the online video: www.DancingKeepsYouYoung.ca

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