Alexandra Deis-Lauby wrote:

> If the figure is new to your dancers, use a triplet (by David smuckler) or a 
> three facing three (Melanie axel lute wrote one).  Contra corners is much 
> easier in that formation.

You can find Melanie Axel-Lute's "Down by the Riverside" here:

In either a triplet or a three-face-three the "inactives" don't have to do 
double duty being contra corners to two different "active" dancers.  Something 
I like about the 3-face-3 setup is that the center people get to dance with a 
variety of different opposites, so that unsure dancers might at least 
occasionally meet someone who can send them in the correct direction.

While the triple-minor setting also avoids having "inactives" do double duty, 
it could be problematical because most contra dancers these days, except for 
those who are also English country dancers, are not very familiar with the way 
progression works in triple minors.

Bob Fabinski wrote:

> I have successfully called "Almost Sackett's Harbor," a triple minor, triple 
> progression dance.
> with the Contra Corners figure in a triplet formation, and there is no 
> waiting out at the top.

For those unfamiliar with Al Olson's dance "Almost Sackett's Harbor," 
instructions can be found in Larry Jennings's book _Give-and-Take_ and on pages 
21=22 of the 1990 Ralph Page Dance Legacy Weekend syllabus:

I'd recommend considerable caution about using this dance.  The challenging 
part isn't the contra corners; it's the progression.  In the notes on the dance 
in the RPDLW syllabus cited above, Larry Jennings writes:

     If the active couples make a point of letting go of the couple
     above them, it may be easier for the #2 and #3 to keep their
     roles straight.

This point is not to be taken lightly!  The action in phrase 7 of the dance 
(first half of B2) puts the dancers into new groups of six, and it can be very 
tempting to think that that's all the regrouping they need to do.  Not so!  
After circling right in phrase 8, the dancers must again regroup into NEW(er) 
groups of six with the active couples, who were in middle positions in the 
groups that just circled right, are again in top position.  To achieve this the 
actives must let go of the couple above them (who have been the #2 couple in 
the round of the dance just completed), and those former #2 dancer must attach 
themselves to the next couple above so as to become a #3 couple in the round 
about to commence.

If there's even one place and time where a sufficient number of dancers cone 
together who don't understand and remember to do the regrouping that I've just 
described, the likely result will be that in the phrase 2 (second half of A1) 
of the new round, instead of the dancers all being in circles of six, there 
will somewhere be a circle of four and a nearby circle of eight.  Once that 
happens, recovery can be practically impossible and the discombobulation can 
spread along the set at triple-progression speed.

I don't doubt Bob's assertion that he's called the dance successfully, and if 
he has any specific advice about teaching it, I'd be delighted if he'd share 
it.  But for anyone else who's thinking of calling it, especially to dancers 
who aren't already familiar with triple minors, I advise you to make sure you 
understand the dance thoroughly (including end effects) and to think carefully 
about how to teach it.


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