Pondering terminology, ... for a reason
Have your say!
As you may have heard if you were at our last dance, Toronto Contra Dance is contemplating a switch from calling dances using the terms "Gents and Ladies" to using gender-free dance role terms. Specifically, we are considering using the terms "Larks and Ravens" (Larks are on the Left, Ravens are on the Right when you take hands four improper and after a swing).
We have not made any decisions yet. We are interested in knowing how our community feels about such a change. There's a link to a survey at the bottom of the page where this link takes you - "read on!
Fundraising Bake Sale Sign-Up
Calling all bakers and lovers of snacks! We're looking to build a fund to replace our aging sound equipment and help with other financial needs that arise in the process of putting on our dances. This winter, we'll be trying a new fundraising effort: bake sales, with all proceeds going to Toronto Contra Dance.
If you are able and willing to provide baked goods (your own or purchased) for sale during the break, please use this form to sign up.
If you'd rather just donate some money directly to ease the financial squeeze the uncooperating weather at our "Spring Thaw" created for us, please use this button:Thanks a lot, ... every dollar counts.
NEW: Pick-Your-Price trial run
A belated thank you to all who responded to our survey about dance fees a few months back. 100% of respondents (seriously!) expressed an interest in trying out a pick-your-price system. So we're going to give it a try for the next few dances. The hope is that this will help get more dancers on the floor, so if cost has been keeping you away for a while, come out! We'd love to see you.
Our finances are tight, so if we lose tons of money we'll have to stop early, but we hope to run this trial through to our last dance of the spring season in June.
Here's how it works:Pay somewhere between $7 and $20 at the door.
You can keep paying what you would have paid before (Non-Members $15; Members $12, Students $10, etc.) or choose some other amount.
Things to keep in mind:
We are a contra dance community who loves getting together for evenings of great music, great dancing, and great fun. Contra dance is a traditional dance style similar to square dancing. We dance to live music, and a caller leads us through the steps of each dance. The music comes from the Scots-Irish and French Canadian traditions, but is often played with a modern twist.
If you are not familiar with contra dancing, we invite you to watch these videos to get a sense of the dance, the music, and the community.
Everyone is welcome! Singles, couples, families, LGBTQ friendly. We welcome new dancers of all ages, quite literally with open arms!
If you can walk, you can contra dance! No experience required. We always offer a free Basics Class from 7:00 - 7:30 pm, and each dance is taught before it is danced. We change partners between each dance, and you will find that experienced dancers seek out new ones to help them along.
Please Come Dance with Us
Every 2nd, 4th, and 5th Saturday evening, from September through mid-June. Regular evening dances are held 7:30 - 10:30 pm, with a Basics Class at 7:00 pm. We sometimes add an advanced level dance from 2:00 - 5:00 pm. See our schedule for details (fall, spring).
St. Barnabas Anglican Church Hall, 175 Hampton Avenue, near Chester subway station (detailed directions). There is municipal parking and street parking nearby. If you are driving from farther away, you may be interested in MTO traveller information (road closures, traffic cameras, etc).
Experimental pricing in effect (for more, see bottom box in the right):
Pick your price somewhere between $7 and $20.
For reasons an more, see newsbox to the right.
Children (16 and under): free
Receive a Second Dance Free card on your first visit.
Shoes, clothing, fragrances:
St. Barnabas has asked us to respect their shoe policy, which is that no street shoes are worn in the gym. Please bring a clean pair of shoes to change into. Any wide-heeled, soft-soled shoes are fine. More details.
Dress casually and comfortably, keeping in mind that it gets quite warm in the dance hall – even in winter. Skirts, shorts, and jeans are all common.
We ask you to refrain from wearing scented products, in consideration of fellow dancers who may be allergic to them. Your thoughtfulness is appreciated.
We provide water throughout our events and free cider at the break. Please help us reduce our environmental impact by bringing your own cup or water bottle.