Ontario Federation – Newsletter Summer 2020

Over the last few months, the world has been turned upside down due to the impact of the COVID 19 virus. Our activity, whether it be square, round or line dancing, has taken a hit. Not only have our clubs been shut down , but our local dance events and the local, provincial and National conventions have been cancelled or postponed. The Canadian National Convention is now scheduled to take place July 8-10, 2021 in Surrey, BC.

Unfortunately, square dancing is the one recreational activity that is the most severely affected by the possibilities associated with transmission of this virus. It is obvious that our activity will be one that takes some time to recover. However, recovery will come. The social distancing guidelines currently in place have served a purpose to keep us safe and we now see some signs of getting back to normal life. However, until such time as the health authorities give us the go ahead to safely socialize together in a normal manner, we will be obliged to keep our clubs shut down. But when our clubs do start up, PLEASE support them!

At the end of May, the Federation hosted a successful Zoom AGM. In addition to our executive committee, we had 36 participants – considerably more that our usual attendance! We had valuable input from the participants. Quite a few people spoke of the importance of keeping contact with our dancers in this time of social distancing and the many ways the clubs or individual members have taken this to heart. Some are holding Zoom meetings, some have their telephone tree active to keep in touch, others are sending out newsletters and other individuals are taking the initiative to call a dance friend.

Although we all love dancing, the social time at our clubs is so important. Friendships made and the support to all when they are going through rough times and the shared happy events in their lives. For many, social isolation is difficult so we should all reach out to our dancer friends!

It is possible that clubs will not be able to start up in September. Our facilities may not be available to us or there may be concerns about cleaning the halls after use. At this time, school boards in some areas are not taking reservations for space for the Fall. Should clubs not be able to open by the end of the year, the Canadian Square and Round Dance Society has agreed to pay our insurance based on last year’s membership lists. So much is uncertain at this stage so keep watching the Federation webpage for updates.

Some callers are keeping in touch sending out quizzes to challenge us; some are doing some virtual calling. We thank them for all the work involved to keep us happy!

Jeff Priest recommends going to Dancing in the Garage series
Click on the link to view the complete video listing of the “two person” dancing that was created by Bob Simpson and Darby Love. The challenge has been to address social distancing in square and round dancing. The “Dancing in the Garage Series” is specifically designed for two person squares & rounds and can be done in your basement, garage or driveway. These videos are presented as dance-along fun-shops and tutorials. Jeff Priest notes that the list is in reverse order so recommends starting at the bottom.

Two Associations will be holding zoom AGM meetings this month. Your participation is encouraged.

Be kind; keep smiling and keep safe!

Howard and Jean Lander – Federation Publicity and PR