From DARYL STOUT@TBOLT to ALL USERS on Thu Nov 26 00:03:00 2015
I've been square dancing since December, 1985...and attended each
National Square Dance Convention from 1986 to 2002. Since then,
health and financial issues have prohibited me from attending any
Anyway, others may feel differently about how a particular convention
went, but this is how I felt they were...from best to worst. This
message covers rankings 1 through 7...the rest of the rankings will
be in another message.
I don't know if it was not knowing what to expect, but not having
been to a National Square Dance Convention (NSDC) before...to me,
THIS was how a NSDC should be run. I was at the Hilton Airport,
having registered just 2 months before the convention. I spent most
of my "eatings" at a Hardee's a short distance from the Hoosier Dome
(now the RCA Dome). The shuttle bus service, the facilities, the
dance floor, the sound for the halls, the vendors, the food service,
the caller selection...ALL were excellent, in my opinion. I could
not find anything to quibble about...and it showed, with over 27,000
dancers registered to fun all under one roof. This became the first
of my "annual religious pilgrimages". It was here again in 1999, but
sadly, that NSDC was a far cry from this one. The RCA Dome was
imploded for a new structure in 2009.
Rank: 2 Year: 1994 Location: Portland, Oregon
Since I began dancing, this convention had the second most dancers
in attendance...close to 22,000. With the exception for some events
at a nearby arena, served by trolley and shuttle bus service, this
was a great convention. The Special Event concert Wednesday night
at the arena with Ronnie Milsap was very enjoyable...and so was the weather...as well as the train ride out and back.
Rank: 3 Year: 1993 Location: St. Louis, Missouri
This was all under one roof, and dancing under the Arch on the
Wednesday night before the convention. Ironically, one week later,
the entire riverfront area where we were was under floodwaters from
the Mississippi River. Thursday was the only day of thunderstorms there...Friday and Saturday's weather was nice. Dancing at the
restored Union Station was nice, although one lady was injured when
she fell from her high heels getting caught in some of the brick
surfaces in the open area.
Rank: 4 Year: 1991 Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
Even though it was all under one roof, there was confusion upon
arrival at the Amtrak station for several dancers...concerning hotel transportation. I somehow lost $500 in travelers cheques on the
train, but was able to get them back...which proves NOT to carry
large amounts of just cash on a long trip!!
Rank: 5 Year: 1988 Location: Anaheim, California
This convention has the distinction of the most dancers to ever
attend a National Square Dance Convention (almost 40,000 dancers in
1976)...and it hosted the 50th NSDC in 2001. This was my first train
trip to a NSDC, and it was fun!! Of the almost 27,000 dancers for this convention, 5000 were single...and 3500 were ladies. My feet swelled
on the train, and I danced practically nonstop Wednesday night...then,
limped back to the hotel in tears, due to terrific pain. I bought a
pair of "Happy Feet" the next day. This was where I learned to dance
the girls part (Dancing By Definition) to Lee Kopman, in a hurry!! The
Parade Of States had to "parade through" a rather small arena...and
unless you already had a seat in there, you missed things...I know the
Fire Marshall was about to have a fit!! The weather was great...highs
in the 70s, lows in the 50s (as it was over 100 back in Texas and
Arkansas). The DisneyLand After Party Saturday Night was fabulous.
The Sunday morning after the convention, we felt the fringes of an
earthquake, centered 45 miles east of Los Angeles...but there was
little damage that I could see. Unfortunately, the 2001 NSDC that
was held here (noted below) was not as good.
Rank: 6 Year: 1992 Location: Cincinatti, Ohio
I don't recall a lot about this convention...rather "average"; but,
just over 20,000 dancers. It was under one roof, for the most part.
Rank: 7 Year: 1998 Location: Charlotte, North Carolina
This convention, another "average" one...the worst thing was that
since 1994, attendance had been dropping steadily.
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