Square Dance Club hosts benefit
On Sept. 6, the Panhandlers Square Dance Club of Martinsburg sponsored their third annual Barn Dance to benefit Meals on Wheels of Jefferson County. Meals on Wheels provides meals to home-bound residents of the county and this year alone has served over 10,500 meals. In the three years the panhandlers have hosted this event, over $3,000 has been raised for this needy cause.
The Barn Dance was held at Wild Goose Farm in Shepherdsotwn. Wild Goose Farm is owned by Crickey and Michelle Shultz, who have generously donated the use of the barn each year for the event.
The dance was an all day event beginning at 1 p.m. And going to 9 p.m. The Jefferson High School jazz band under the direction of J.P. Lynch kicked off the event this year. These remarkable and talented young people filled the barn with the fabulous sounds of the big band era. After their performance, approximately 100 dancers from Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Maryland danced the remainder of th eafternoon and evening.
The headline callers for the event were Rich Steadman, club caller for The Panhandlers, Carl Odell of the Mountaineer Twirlers, Charles Town, Art Levigne of the Gad-Abouts, Hagerstown, Maryland and Gary Proctor, of the Star Promoenaders, Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Visiting callers Jerry Goshorn of the Pal Square, Palmyra, Pennsylvania and Dean Singleton, new club caller for the Frederick Promendaders of Frederick, Maryland, also called dances. In addition to square dancing, there was round and line dancing cued by Butch Bloxom, Winchester, Virginia and Roberta Harris, Martinsburg. All of the square dance callers and cuers generously donated their time and talents to help make the event a huge success.
Food was provided by the Friendship Fire Department of Harpers Ferry. Proceeds went to support eh department.
The Panhandlers Square Dance Club was organized in September 1984 and has members who range in age from 11 to 80 years plus. The club will celebrate its 30th anniversary Sept. 20 at the Eagle School in Martinsburg. The celebration will kick off with a dinner beginning at 6:30 p.m. with dancing to follow from 7 to 10 p.m. The club will honor many of the founding members to include the club’s first caller, Bob Asp, and some of the new members including longtime caller Rich Steadman and Cuer Lou Steadman.
Square dancing is fun and great exercise and is referred to as “friendship set to music.” The Panhandlers create a clean, fun and traditional setting for their dances and encourage anyone who likes to dance or wants to learn to dance to come visit them. Additional information on the club and a schedule of their dances can be found on their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/panhandlerssqaredanceclub.