April 17, 2016

Congratulations! to Times Squares and Independence Squares for putting together a superb collaborative weekend of square dancing with the stupendous Chris Phillips from South Florida.  Months in the making, this “Crossover Weekend” involved coordinated efforts with both Club’s Caller Liaisons, Housing Hosts, the Boards, and Chris and his partner Tom.  The result was a high energy weekend with dancing Saturday in NYC, and Sunday in Philadelphia.  Clubs attended each other’s events, hence “crossover”.   As one dancer/caller in attendance noted, the event was special not only for the animated, energetic and creative calling by Chris, but for the spirit of comraderie and teamwork not only of the two Northeast Clubs, but of the dancers themselves.  Everyone worked together, as 8 people do in Square Dancing, to execute the calls correctly, and have fun with the very challenging choreography, spurred on by Chris’ enthusiasm.

Chris is known as a “Pioneer” in gay square dancing, learning how to call in the late 70’s and early 80’s when few if any callers would call to same gender couples.  In some places same gender couple traditional dance was actually an illegal and punishable offense.  Chris was a founding member of the South Florida Mustangs, which later led to the formation of the International Association of Gay Square Dance Clubs (IAGSDC) in 1983.  It was a great honor to help work on bringing this man who should be an inspiration to all of us, in a rare appearance to the Northeast.  His website is http://caller4u.com/ which lists upcoming calling engagements.  Most important, he will be a featured caller at Independence Square’s next Fly In March 31-April 2, 2017 in Wilmington DE.   George V.