So you think you can square dance

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The second annual Pioneer Promenade square dancing event will be held the first weekend of April. The event is hosted by Temple Squares, Utah’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and friends’ square dance group. The Pioneer Promenade II event will host two well-known callers, Anne Uebelacker from Canada and Mike Desisto from Seattle.

The event spans three days and will include a variety of dances from Mainstream to Challenge skill levels, said Roque Salas, the director of promotions and marketing for Temple Squares.

“Even though we follow a country-western style of dance, we use all types of music,” Salas said. “It could be pop, reggae or even techno.”

The event, which is called a “fly-in,” will host dancers from Utah, Colorado and other states. The expected attendance will be more than 50 people, Salas said. It is an opportunity for people to get together and dance and have fun, it is not a competition, Salas said. While dancing is the main focus, there will also be socials and a potluck dinner.

Although the event is for experienced dancers, there will be one free session for beginners to try out square dancing after the potluck on Saturday night. However, Temple Squares meets weekly, and all skill levels are invited to attend those gatherings, Salas said.

“There’s no pressure at the weekly meetings,” Salas said. “It’s a great opportunity to socialize in a casual environment and it’s a great exercise program.” There will be other opportunities for beginners to get a “Taste” of square dancing later in the spring and summer, so keep your dance card open. Classes will start in the fall. Contact Temple Squares for more details.

The dancing does not follow any gender-specific roles and attendees do not need to come with a partner, Salas said.

“Everyone will get to dance with different partners,” Salas said. “You can even learn how to do both parts.”

For more information about the weekly meetings, classes, the Taste events, or to register for the Pioneer Promenade II fly-in, go to templesquares.org, send email to slcsquaredancing@gmail.com or call 801-449-1293.

Seth Bracken

Seth Bracken is the editor of QSaltLake

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