I remember when, in my late 30s, all of us said we'd dance until we died,
even if it meant dancing in walkers. Of course we didn't have a clue what that meant. This was back in the '80s when the Atlanta dance was a fairly focused age cohort: vast majority of dancers between 30-45. That age cohort is now in their 60s and 70s.
Many have stopped dancing regularly.

I both appreciate "community" while at the same time acknowledge age issues
which affect dances.

A nearby dance, Sautee, has a twice a month Tuesday evening contra dance that's intended as a beginner's dance but, when I've gone, seems more an elder beginner
(50 and 60 year old beginners) or elder-elder dance.
I believe that is the perfect spin off ...
    a dance that is slower paced and easier to dance (simpler sequences).

I believe this issue (aging in general) is affecting our dances
and will just get more prominent and that a pro-active solution
is best.


For the last three years, one of our older dancers has been declining with 
dementia--and her husband, not a good dancer himself, continues to bring her to 
our dances. Invariably, they create chaos on the dance floor.

Most people on the board of my dance organization feel it's important to 
continue to include these dancers until such time that the husband decides it's 
time for them to stop coming. On the other hand, I'm concerned with the effect 
that they're having on other dancers. I've heard at least one dancer say that 
she considered not coming to a dance when she saw that this couple was 
there--and certainly this couple's presence is diminishing the dance experience 
of many of the dancers who've come to our events for the high level of dancing 
that we were able to deliver in the past.

Has anyone else wrestled with this sort of problem? If yes, what did you do (or 
not do) about it?

Katy Heine
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