Upcoming Dances

Our primary dance hall is at the Suzanne Paterson Center, 1 Monument Drive, Princeton NJ. Please see our Directions page for more details.

Wednesdays Contra Dances: 8-10:30 pm Contra Dance (7:30 pm Intro to Basics Workshop)

 

English Country Dances (2nd Saturday of most months): 8-11 pm English country dance (7:30 pm Intro to Basics Workshop)

Saturday Contra Dances (4th Saturday of most months): 8-11 pm Contra dance (7:30 pm Into to Basics Workshop)

Family Dances and Mixed Age Dance Band (Selected Sundays:) 3-5 pm dancing, 2:15 pm rehearsal for MAD Band

ScandiDance-NJ: Every 3rd Monday of the month, 8-10 pm, held at Christ Congregation, 50 Walnut Lane, Princeton NJ, parking in lot off Houghton Road.

You can click on any of the events below for more details.

Admission

Wednesday Dance:      
$10 regular admission; $5-$10 for Students / Limited Income

Free admission on the last Wednesday of every month for all dancers age 35 and under.

 

Saturday Dance: $11 regular admission; $5-$11 for Students / Limited Income

 

Family Dance: $5 per person, or $15 per family

 

Please note that special events may have a different admission charge.

Schedule of Events

If you would like to download our quarterly schedule, you can do so with a Word doc here, or with PDF here.

Please Bring

To protect the floor of the hall, please bring clean, SOFT-SOLED SHOES to dance in.

 

Also, in consideration of dancers with sensitivities, please do not wear FRAGRANCES.  Thank you in advance!

Executive Committee

Our dance is a fully volunteer-run organization.  The Executive Committee is responsible for organizing the weekly dances, planning special events, making policy decisions, organizing the music, handling finances, and purchasing equipment and supplies.  If you have questions, comments, concerns, are having a problem with someone on the dance floor, or would like to find out how you can volunteer with us, please see a member of the Executive Committee.  The current Executive Committee members are:

 

Left to Right: Christine Sidorski, Connie Crush, Shanti Kengeter, Larry Koplik, Fang Wu, Dan Porcher, Bill O'Sullivan

Executive Committee News

Ben Root has resigned from the Executive Committee due to his move to Boston. Thank you, Ben, for all your contributions!

 

Jeff Gauthier has also passed his EC duties along, and we thank him for his contributions to PCD as well. Thank you Jeff!

 

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If you have any questions about the EC or have interest in joining the committee that keeps our dances planned and running smoothly throughout the year, please contact Larry Koplik or speak to him at the next dance -- or talk to any other current EC member.

 

Community News
Dance News

 

Princeton Country Dancers events are canceled through at least the end of October.  Please stay healthy and keep washing your hands and wearing your mask!

 

We will continue to post updates here, and if any canceled dances turn out to be merely postponed to a later date, we will be sure to keep you updated. Please check our special events page for additional dance news, including virtual dance events that you may experience from the comfort of your home.

 

Most recently, we have added an event to our Special Events page called All Hands In Virtual Social Gathering and Contra Dance, scheduled for Saturday, October 10. We encourage you to check the special events page for details on how to connect with other dancers and to continue dancing during this pandemic.

Sometime in October, we will re-evaluate and make a decision
about the next few months.

As the Country Dance and Song Society reminds us:

Our dance, song, and music traditions will not go away if we need to hit the pause button for a while. They’ve made it through population migrations, world wars, and the rise of digital entertainment. Dancing and singing together will continue with gusto after the initial virus has run its course. Be kind and understanding with the dancers, singers, musicians, callers, and organizers around you.

Announcement

 

Fran Cladek, enthusiastic PCD dancer and hard-working former Executive Committee member, recently passed away.

 

As far as we know, there are no plans for a service because of Covid-19 (which, by the way, was not the cause of Fran's death).


Her obituary and a tribute message board can be found at the funeral home website, for anyone interested in sharing memories of Fran or expressing condolences to the family.


 

NJ Bill S863

 

The provisions of S863, a proposed bill in the NJ General Assembly, would possibly require musicians and callers in non-profit organizations like PCD to be viewed as employees rather than (underpaid) volunteers, creating a lot of harmful tax and administrative headaches for PCD and our performers.

 

The Folk Project (which oversees the Swingin' Tern dance) has asked dancers and performers to write letters to their NJ State representatives opposing the bill. See their post about the bill, which includes a sample letter:

 

https://folkproject.org/s863.shtml

 

Note: the Folk Project letter only mentions musicians, but the bill would no doubt also affect callers as well. 

 

A letter in your own words expressing your own version of the letter expressing basically the same opinion rather than a verbatim copy of the Folk Project's letter, would be most effective.

Here is further information to consider adding to your letter that could help NJ lawmakers easily make the change that we want: "This exemption can easily be added, by adding section R.S.43:21-19(i)(7)(M)  to the categories included in section 1(c) of the bill."

 

Thanks for your help with this.

Dance Music

 

Country Dance Music Radio (CDMR) is a new Internet streaming radio station dedicated to playing traditional dance music for the enjoyment of dancers. Programming includes contra, English country, and more. We’ve just added these musicians and bands:
 

- Alex Sturbaum

- Anadama

- Chip Prince and Ilya Levin

- Daron Douglas

- Chimney Swift

- Golden Bantam String Band

- Newport String Project

- The Poor Cousins

 

You can listen here:

https://radio.contracorner.com/

Please spread the news to your dancing friends and musicians! More music and musicians are being added all the time. 

 

Most importantly, PLEASE DONATE BACK TO THE MUSICIANS who’ve so generously lent their music to the station and played for us at our dances. Many of these are selling even more of their music than appears on the station, so don’t miss out of the music even if you can’t dance.

 

The station runs all day and night. This is a great complement to the live-streamed concerts popping up now and then. Radio is available wherever and whenever. You can listen through your smartphone or your computer. And watch the site for special programming that will be developed. 

 

All my best wishes to you,

Bob Peterson

bob@contracorner.com 

Country Dance Music Radio - https://radio.contracorner.com/

Executive Committee Election Results

Connie Crush, Larry Koplik, Bill O'Sullivan, Dan Porcher, Brian
Schmult, Christine Sidorski, and Fang Wu have been elected to be the members of the 2020-2021 PCD Executive Committee.

Thank you to all who participated in the election.

Where Feet Fly and Spirits Soar

Princeton Country Dancers is a volunteer-run, non-profit organization whose mission is to carry on and promote traditional forms of American and English dancing, both historic and in modern interpretation.  We sponsor contra and English country dances, Scandinavian couple dancing, as well as Morris, Longsword, Rapper Sword, Molly, Garland, and May Pole dance teams, a house Pick-Up Band, and a series of family dances.  All our events are open to the public, and all ages are welcome.  If you would like to learn more about how our organization operates, you can read our constitution.  Please also consider connecting with us on our Facebook group.  You can search for "Princeton Country Dancers (PCD)," or you can click the social media button at the bottom of this page to go directly to our group.

You can expect:

  1. An enjoyable social dance event open to all

  2. Live music always

  3. A different band each week

  4. National and local talent

  5. Once a month Pick-Up Band

  6. Beginners welcome

  7. No partner needed

Dance Traditions

Contra dance is a traditional folk dance that has many "American" elements, but has its origins in Western Europe.

English Country Dance is an ancestor of contra dance and shares many similar movements. The music and dance forms are more varied in tempo and style than contra and provide myriad opportunities to relate to your partner and the set as a whole. 

At Family Dances, children are welcomed and encouraged to dance and/or play in the Mixed Age Dance (MAD) Band.

Visit our Special Events page to see some exciting things that we are looking forward to.

On select days throughout the year, musicians can bring their instruments to join the Pick-up Band.  Click over to our PUB page to find out about the Pick-up Band.  You can click here for information about the MAD (Mixed Age Dance) Band.

The newest dance series sponsored by PCD, this series features traditional couple dancing mainly from Sweden and Norway.  As with our other dances, all are welcome, no partner required.  Dances include schottische, reinlender, polska, slangpolska, snoa, waltz, and hambo.

Molly dancing team which presents traditional dances of East Anglia in a New Jersey style.

Morris team that performs traditional English dance utilizing rhythmic stepping, the wearing of bells, and the use of implements such as sticks, swords, and handkercheifs.

This Rapper Sword Team performs intricate dances with flexible swords.

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© 2016 by PRINCETON COUNTRY DANCERS.

Princeton Country Dancers

English country dancing to live music at Princeton Country Dancers