A new form of dance is stepping into the spotlight in Anacortes.
Bill and Betty Connor moved to Anacortes earlier this year from Fairbanks and brought their love of contra dancing with them.
A form of American folk dance, contra dancing does not require any experience.
The steps are easy to learn, and dancers can come alone or with a partner.
“The best part is the community feeling, when people have a chance to meet new people,” Betty Connor said.
A caller announces each step above the music, and the dancers follow the music.
The Connors formed Skagit Contra Dancers and held their first dance March 3 at the Depot.
They hoped 30 people might turn out for the event and were pleasantly surprised by more than 100 dancers, not just from Anacortes but from Seattle, Bellingham, Arlington, Burlington, Mount Vernon and La Conner.
“That was so unexpected,” Betty Connor said. “Apparently Skagit County and Anacortes are ready for this kind of dance.”
Flowing Tide provided the music, entertaining dancers of all ages with lively tunes from their guitar, fiddle, mandolin, bass, drum and flute.
Connor said the interaction between the caller, live musicians and the dancers lends even more energy to the dance.
The next contra dance night will be Friday, April 27 upstairs at the Eagles Hall. Instruction for beginners starts at 7 p.m. and the dancing will continue from 7:30-9:30 p.m.
The cost is $5 at the door.
Experienced Bellingham caller Marlin Prowell will lead the dance.
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