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Flash Dances - A History of Spontaneous Events


Flash Dance at the Missouri Botanical Garden

What's a Flash Dance?

Ever hear of "flash mobs"? They're spontaneous gatherings that bring people together on short notice for a brief period of time. Well, sometimes our dancers join our musicians for a "flash dance" - an opportunity to waltz or contra in a public place.

We started doing them in about 2004, and haven't done very many since 2013 - but check out below some of the ones we did back then. They sure were fun.

If you'd like to read more about our Flash Dances, how they started, and how to run them, read Greg Rohde's article on Carefully Planned Spontaneity.

 

Past Dances

Wed
2013
5:30pm

Missouri Botanical Garden

We’ll meet in the lobby of the Ridgway Center and enter as a group at 5:30 on Wednesday, September 18. We have exclusive use of the Gardens after it closes to the public.
Our evening will be a progressive party as we dance in 8-10 venues throughout the Garden. While we’ll linger in a few places, we’ll be at other sites for just one dance. 

Here's a map of where we'll be dancing (follow the letters of the alphabet along the yellow line). Click on the map to see it big in your browser. To print that map, you'll probably need to set the printer in Print Preview to about 60%.

map garden-2013

Wednesday September 18, 2013 at 5:30p. FLASH DANCE at the Missouri Botanical Gardens
We’ll meet in the main lobby of the Ridgway Center between 5:15-5:30 and enter as a group promptly at 5:30. We have exclusive use of the Gardens after it closes to the public. Our evening will be a progressive party as we dance contras and waltzes in several venues throughout the Garden. While we’ll linger in a few places, we’ll be at other sites for just one dance. We’ll dance in a few of our regular spots and at least one new place (a task which is getting more challenging after doing this for 10 summers.) You’ll have a chance to dance “A-MAZE-ing waltzes as well as contra under the “Gourds of Damacles”.
We’re dancing one day before the Full Moon (moonrise is 6:28pm) and the sunset is at 7:04pm, so it should be a beautiful evening for dancing. The evening will be much cooler than most of our dances there and there’s a slight chance for rain. We’ll dance rain or shine. No partner or experience is necessary. Lessons are offered on the spot and we love having new dancers. People change partners each dance, so bringing one is not necessary. All we ask is that you stay with our group rather than wander off on your own.
Our dance surfaces may include grass, gravel, concrete, wood chips, etc, so leave your good shoes behind. Some of our venues are a little tight, so we’ll have designated “parking lots” for those who bring a dance bag. I

Sat
Jan 12
2013

2:00 pm

Pere Marquette Lodge

We danced contra dances and waltzes to music played by Martha Edwards and Rich Egan in the beautiful Pere Marquette Lodge.

Some of us extended our weekend with hiking and/or eagle watching in and around the park. (The trails are well marked and there are multiple scenic overlooks.)

Many of us had dinner in the Lodge dining room or at nearby restaurants.

The Elsah Dance

Following the dinner break, we drove 10 miles south for the Elsah Contra Dance from 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM at the historic Farley's Music Hall 37 Mill St., Elsah, Il. (More information at www.historicelsah.org/)

For those wishing to spend the night, here is a listing of some lodgings in Elsah.

Watch this space for more details or see our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/events/441622055885339/

Sat,
Jul 30
2011

10:30 am

Clayton Farmer's Market
Join us for contra dances and a few waltzes with The Boney Goat Band.  Martha Edwards will coordinate the callers.
The Clayton Farmer's Market is at 8300 Maryland Ave at Topton Way.  Parking is available on the lot just West of Straub's in Clayton.
The music will go from 10-12 and we'll start dancing at 10:30 and dance for an hour or so.

Sat, Aug 13, 2011

10:00 am

Ferguson Farmer's Market
Join us for polkas and waltzes to live German music at the Ferguson Farmer's Market.
The Ferguson Farmer's Market is at 20 S Florissant Rd (63135). We'll dance from 10-11.

Sun, Aug 21, 2011
5:30 pm

Missouri Botanical Garden

We’ll meet in the lobby of the Ridgway Center and enter as a group at 5:30. We have exclusive use of the Gardens after it closes to the public.
Our evening will be a progressive party as we dance in 8-10 venues throughout the Garden. While we’ll linger in a few places, we’ll be at other sites for just one dance.

More than half of our venues will be ones where we have never danced before. We’ll dance in thyme with the music, we’ll dance with Madonna, we’ll explore tree rings and Fibonacci, and even do a reflective dance. If the stars align, we’ll even dance in a space normally closed to the public. In keeping with tradition, we’ll dance through a fountain, so dress accordingly and leave a towel in your car if you need to.

Since this dance takes the place of our monthly waltz party, the majority of our dances will be waltzes with some contras thrown in for good measure.

Please check back here and/or our Facebook page on Saturday or Sunday to see if there are any updates. We'll even post a map of our route.
Life doesn't get much better than this.

Here is a map of our path through the garden. We'll dance in most, if not all of these sites. Click on the map for a larger, printable version.

Map of Missouri Botanical Garden

Wednesday September 18, 2013 at 5:30p. FLASH DANCE at the Missouri Botanical Gardens
We’ll meet in the main lobby of the Ridgway Center between 5:15-5:30 and enter as a group promptly at 5:30. We have exclusive use of the Gardens after it closes to the public. Our evening will be a progressive party as we dance contras and waltzes in several venues throughout the Garden. While we’ll linger in a few places, we’ll be at other sites for just one dance. We’ll dance in a few of our regular spots and at least one new place (a task which is getting more challenging after doing this for 10 summers.) You’ll have a chance to dance “A-MAZE-ing waltzes as well as contra under the “Gourds of Damacles”.

We’re dancing one day before the Full Moon (moonrise is 6:28pm) and the sunset is at 7:04pm, so it should be a beautiful evening for dancing. The evening will be much cooler than most of our dances there and there’s a slight chance for rain. We’ll dance rain or shine. No partner or experience is necessary. Lessons are offered on the spot and we love having new dancers. People change partners each dance, so bringing one is not necessary. All we ask is that you stay with our group rather than wander off on your own.

Our dance surfaces may include grass, gravel, concrete, wood chips, etc, so leave your good shoes behind. Some of our venues are a little tight, so we’ll have designated “parking lots” for those who bring a dance bag.


Sun June 10
2012

4:30p

Exterior of Pavilion

Dance Trance Flash Dance

If you're heading to Lexington for Dance Trance, you can extend your weekend with a Flash Dance at the High Bridge Park Dance Pavilion, a spacious, open air Victorian Pavilion in a park that overlooks the Kentucky River and its palisades.
The park is 45 minutes SW of Dance Trance, which ends at 3:00pm.
We'll gather at High Bridge Park about 4:30 for waltzes, contras, and a picnic dinner (BYOE).  If the pavilion is already rented, we will use one of the smaller gazebos or a grassy area near High Bridge, an engineering feat which was the highest railroad trestle in the world (280 feet) when it was built in 1877. 

DanceTranceFlashDanceGroupPicPlayground 01After the dance, you can head home or enjoy lodging at the nearby Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill. We have a group rate of $45 per person (double occupancy or more) plus $20 for each additional person in the room.  They are holding all 12 rooms in the West Family Dwelling for us.  To reserve a room, call 800.734.5611 x1545 and ask for Jean.
On Monday, you can eat breakfast at the restaurant, take a tour of the Living History Museum, enjoy a Riverboat Ride, or just head home happy. Click here for more pictures and links.