Taking chances and finding joy

What a great opening night for our Queer Country Social dance. We had roughly 20 people show up for the beginner lesson. Most were a meetup group event and a few from a south shore group.
It was amazing to see these people come out and do something they never done before. Most had not danced anything like social dancing since they were in grade school.
I was the basic two step teacher and I’m amazed they all picked up the basic two step pattern and go through a line dance lesson that was not easy. They rocked.
I’m sure they didn’t feel that way, I know I didn’t when I first came to a dance back in 2003. It took me many months to work up the nerve to step through that door. The only dance experience I had was on the club scene. I was looking for something a bit better than a bar to find someone. I didn’t expect to find a community. That first dance, Bucky came up to say hello and asked me to dance. How daunting! I sucked — toes were stepped on, I think I hit Ruth with my elbow, and my turns were all over the place (sorry Jim). There were so many people infinitely better than I was — I felt so clumsy and awkward. But Bucky reminded me that I never did this before and encouraged me to keep at it. I did. So much so that I’m president of the club and help DJ, teach, organize, and am part of the performance group. While I didn’t find a partner, I found a bunch of friends and my life is richer for it.
Social dancing is challenging but fun. A 2003 New England Medical Journal article “Leisure Activities and the Risk of Dementia in the Elderly“, showed that out of 18 activities, social dancing was significantly more effective at keeping your faculties as you grow older. I believe it’s the combination of being hyper aware of your surroundings while socializing and moving to the rythm of music.
You just don’t get that in a gym.
I love this group for their mix of ages, genders, and ability levels — the most refreshing is that we mix it up. We don’t care what role you dance, who you love, what color your skin. We just like to dance and hope you do too.
Gays for Patsy hosts three events:
I also love going to Americana Sundays in Somerville on Sundays from 8-10 at Thunder Road on Somerville Ave. that features a live band lead by Greg Klyma – a queer friendly guy who took his date to one of our dances and loved it. Though not a queer venue, we end up taking over the dance floor more than not. It is a small venue and quite not intimidating at all.
I hope to find you on the dance floor. Ask me to dance.
Bob “da prez” Sweeney
Gays for Patsy

May and June Happenings and Annual Meeting Notice

In this Post:

A quick list of stuff happening in May/June. Tell us what you think (surveys!). Queer Country Social: May 20, and Dirty Water Saloon update.

Spring Stomp: a Hoedown in P-town was amazing!
Thank you all for making it such a great success (success = happy, smiling, sweaty, exhausted people). In the “Tell us what you think” section below, I have a survey to this year’s Stomp attendees and one for previous Stomp attendees too.

End of Year Annual Board Meeting, Saturday, June 17 (before the dance)
5:30-6:30 pm, 1st UU Church of JP.
GFP Members (those that bought a membership for the 2016/17 season) come talk about the year, elect a new board member, and strategize about the new year.

While we think of the end of the 2016-17 year as the June 17th Queer Country Social dance, our Dirty Water Saloon dances continues through July and August on Tuesday nights in air-conditioned loveliness.

Busy May/June!

We’ve got a bunch of stuff going on, here’s a “quick” list:

  • Tuesdays – Dirty Water Saloon. (see full info below)
    7-10 pm, Bella Luna Restaurant and Milky Way Lounge.
  • Saturday, May 20 – Queer Country Social. (see full info below)
    6:30-11 pm. 1st UU Church of JP.
  • Memorial Day Weekend – IAGLCWDC annual convention.
    A bunch of us are going to Miami to partake of the annual convention in conjunction with Out Games. It should be a blast and we’ll post pics when we can. We’ll also be on the lookout for fun line dances and new dance moves to bring back to you.
  • Sunday, June 4 – Boston AIDS Walk.
    Julie Kaufmann is walking again this year (as she has done since almost the beginning of this fundraiser) and she will be collecting at the May 20th dance. Trivia! Did you know it was at this walk in 1988 that Gays for Patsy was coined and formed? Go figure.
  • Sunday, June 4 – Queer Country “Sweet Tea” Social and Workshop: Pride Edition.
    3-7 pm. 1st UU Church of JP.
    Come at 3 for a hour-long workshop on Salsa with Elvi and Beth! Then dance from 4-7 to music by Ruth Ewing. Invite your friends! We’ll have informal two step lessons in the hall for anyone who is new.
  • Saturday, June 10 – Boston Pride Parade.
    Gather 11 pm, March 12 noon,
    We are marching this year! Kendra and I will have more information after this Sunday.
  • Saturday, June 17 – Annual Meeting before the dance.
    5:30-6:30 pm • 1st UU church of JP
    Members come elect a new board member (Bucky is stepping down), and talk about the year ahead. Let me know if you’d like to be our new board member.
  • Saturday, June 17 – Final Queer Country Social of the 2016-17 year.
    Join us for the last dance before we take a break for the summer. Art Sullivan will be teaching, Bob will be DJing. More details to come.
  • 2017-18 Queer Country Social and Stomp Calendar set.
    I’m hoping to get the dates into the calendar on the site this week. We’ll turn 30 in June 2018, so we’ll be having a special dance to celebrate. More details soon.

Tell us what you think!

Our last season of Queer Country Socials didn’t do well for the first time in my presidency. I’d like your opinions. Ever want to tell me off? Now’s your chance. You can be anonymous.

  • General GFP Survey. (about 3 mins.) survey on instructors, format, partner and line dances, and music. If you’ve not attended dances, I want to hear why.
  • Spring Stomp: A Hoedown in P-town surveys. One for those who attended last month’s Stomp and a survey for people who didn’t come this year but have attended one in the past. Your chance to tell me what you think. Don’t miss out!
    • Survey for 2017 Attendees (about 10 mins) A bit more in-depth than the general GFP survey, but I want to get your feedback, thoughts, and gather some quotes that I can use for next year. Fill out what you can. I definitely want to know about the instructors and your thoughts on line dances.
    • Survey for Past Attendees (about 5 mins) Attended previous Stomps, let me know why you didn’t go this year.

May 20 Queer Country Social: Stomp Review and Renegades Performance

7-11 pm • • $12 suggested sliding-scale donation ($8 for GFP members)
First UU Church of JP • 6 Eliot Street, Jamaica Plain (Boston), MA
gaysforpatsy.org/queer-country-social
6:30-8 pm Lessons with Bob • 8-11 pm Social Dancing with DJ Art Sullivan
Lessons: 6:30 pm – Beginner Two Step with Bob Sweeney
7:00-8:00 pm – Stomp Review with Bob Sweeney. We’ll look over our videos from Stomp and try to recreate moves and line dances taught during Stomp. Think of it as a peer review.
Social Dancing: 8-11 pm with DJ Art Sullivan
Come dance the night away with DJ Art Sullivan while he plays a selection of music that you can two step, west coast swing, east coast swing, line dance galore, waltz and more.
Bring Extra $$ or a check to give to Julie for the Boston

Dirty Water Saloon: Two Step and Line Dance Review

Tuesdays, 7-10 pm • $10 suggested sliding-scale donation.
Bella Luna Restaurant and Milky Way Lounge, 284 Amory St, Jamaica Plain, MA
gaysforpatsy.org/dirty-water-saloon
We are working on Two Step this month and reviews of line dances.
Tonight:
7:00-7:45 pm: Alan Gaskell is teaching a two step move (he may be a few minutes late)
7:45: pm-8:15 pm: Kendra is teaching a line dance of some sort that will be fun
8:15-10:00 pm Bob is DJing the social dance portion

That’s it for now,
Bob “da prez” Sweeney
Gays for Patsy.

Country Dancing is Good for Your Brain!

In a recent New York Time’s article, “Walk, Stretch or Dance? Dancing May Be Best for the Brain”, a study found that out of a number of activities given to an aging group of test subjects, country western dancing significantly made a difference in keeping brain function. Granted this is a small study over a short period of time, but anyone who dances knows navigating the dance floor and learning line dances does keep us on our toes (literally and figuratively).

So get dancing

At Gays for Patsy we have offer the following opportunities (akas: dances) to fortify your brain (more info below or click on the links to go to our website):

Weekly: Dirty Water Saloon (on Tuesdays)
Monthly: Queer Country Socials (3rd Saturday and some Sundays)
Yearly: Spring Stomp: A Hoedown in P-town April 28-30, 2017 (coming up!)

All are great ways to get out, learn new things and exercise your brain.

Our dances are for everyone though we are mainly a queer organizaiton (LGBTQA+S = Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Questioning, Asexual, and Straight).  All we ask is that you don’t care about gender norms and want to have fun.

No experience? We’ll learn ya
No partner? We’ll find ya some.

So get out and dance already!

Bob “da prez” Sweeney,
Gays for Patsy

Dirty Water Saloon graphicDirty Water Saloon

Tuesdays • 7-10 pm
Bella Luna Restaurant and Milky Way Lounge • Jamaica Plain

This is a small venue that we have fun with experimenting with music, line dances, and more. It’s a fun dance that has a bar/restaurant so you can come order a drink or a pizza and enjoy the dance as you go along.

April’s Dirty Water Saloon Dances:

Date 7:00 pm
Partner Dance Lesson
7:45 pm
Line DanceLesson
8:15-10 pm
Social Dancing DJ
Demo videos
April 11 West Coast Swing
peer taught
Sick of Me
with Kendra
(Stepsheet)
DJ: Sam
April 18 West Coast Swing
with Alan Gaskell
Power Surge
with Jim
(Stepsheet)
DJ: Bucky
April 25 DJ: Bob

queer country social logoQueer Country Social

April 15 • 6:30-11 pm
1st UU Church of Jamaica Plain

The space is much bigger than Dirty Water Saloon and has a wonderful dance floor. This month we’re venturing into tango! Patrick and Beth will be teaching a basic tango lesson and Beth will teach a tango based line dance Burlesque, and our DJ Bob will play a mix of two step, west coast, east coast, line dances galore, tango, and a waltz or two.

April 15’s Dance at a Glance

6:30 pm
Beginner Two Step
Lesson
7 pm
Beyond the Basics
Lesson
7:30 pm
Line Dance
Lesson
8-11 pm
Social Dancing
Demo Video
Beginner Two-Step
with Beth
Beginning Tango
with Patrick & Beth
Burlesque
with Beth
(Stepsheet)
DJ: Bob

Spring Stomp graphicSpring Stomp: A Hoedown in P-town

April 28–30, 2017 — Our 25th year!
Sage Inn and Lounge and Provincetown Town Hall

Here's the latest schedule as of March 8, 2017 There’s so much going on this weekend that a quick blurb can’t suffice. With 3½ dances, workshops, and lessons you’ll have a great time. We have Alan Gaskell and Simone teaching the partner dance workshops and offering private lessons! We’ll be teaching 6 line dances this weekend and adding a Sunday t-dance so you can get some dancing in before heading home. But don’t wait to buy your tickets, the “early bird” price will be going away soon and you’ll have to pay full price! There’s a list of discounted guest houses on the site (just mention Stomp).

NOTE: If you want to partake of the Sunday Brunch from 8-10 am at Sage Inn and Lounge, you must buy your brunch ticket by Friday, April 14! (we need to let Sage know).

Gays for Patsy’s Renegaydes

The Renegaydes are our own performance dance group. You’ll see them at our Spring Stomp, our Pride dance, and the IAGLCWDC (International Association of Gay and Lesbian Country Dance Clubs) convention in Miami. Come check them out. They’re working on a fun routine choreographed by Bucky Chappell. It should be fun. The Renegaydes also has a facebook page at GFPRenegaydes.

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