Allison,

I am with Alan on this.  I would use several of the most well received
dances, and then add a few with a similar level of difficulty.  I would
look for variations in formations to provide variety without adding
difficulty.  Another way to add variety is by using different music,  As an
example, try a jig instead of a reel, or use a different tempo.

I began a new barn dance series last weekend in Sturbridge, MA and had a
small, but enthusiastic, crowd.  I also host a shortened series in
Stafford, CT that has grown to 60-80 dancers per event.  I usually start
with a couple of circle mixers, followed by longways, then a simple contra
or two, and some easy squares.  I insert a scatter dance occasionally.  I
also like to use a circle mixer as the last dance, as it is a great visual
affirmation of our efforts to build a community.

My experience building the Stafford Stomp community is most community level
dancers do not mind repetition from month to month, and in fact enjoy the
ability to relax and dance they know well.

I wish you the best as you go forward.
Rich



On Wed, Oct 24, 2018 at 1:31 PM Winston, Alan P. via Callers <
callers@lists.sharedweight.net> wrote:

> In general, I'd say to prepare mostly the same easiness-level of dances,
> mostly different dances, a repeat of whatever the most popular dance was,
> and have a couple slightly more challenging ones - with progression, etc -
> up your sleeve but without any emotional investment in actually using them.
>
> Expect very little to carry over to a second dance five months later.
> Maybe more facility in getting  lined up, but also (if you're lucky)
> they'll bring friends with no experience.
>
> -- Alan
>
>
>
> On 10/24/18 10:25 AM, Allison Jonjak via Callers wrote:
>
> Hi all,
>
> I hail from a rural area with no nearby dance communities. This June I
> held a free community barn dance, featuring lots of Linda Leslie's "very
> easy dances".  Through the magic of newspapers I was able to connect with a
> string band, and we had about 25 dancers, lots of whom left their email
> addresses 'so you can invite us again next time.'
>
> I'll head home for the holidays, the band is willing and the hall is
> willing, so I'm planning to host another dance. The question is: should I
> prepare
> -the same dances
> -the same easiness-level of dances, but different actual dances
> -a dance or two that uses progressions?
>
> The dancers in June learned very quickly, and aced the proto-progressions
> in both Jefferson & Liberty, and Peak Bagger.
>
> How much of that practice in June do I expect to carry forward to
> November?   Here was the program I wound up calling,
> https://contradb.com/programs/76 , pardon that the calling notes are
> mixed in with my followup notes. Here were the dances I had prepared:
> https://contradb.com/programs/71
>
> Thanks all in advance for your help!
>
> --
> Allison Jonjak, M.S., E.I.T.
> allisonjon...@gmail.com
> allisonjonjak.com
>
>
>
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