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> Tips for New Dancers
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 Contra dancing isn't difficult, but it can be confusing at first. We understand that it can be un-nerving to walk into a room full of strangers and start learning unfamiliar dances. Here are some things that will make your first visit easier.

> Dress comfortably and casually. You will be exercising throughout the evening. T-shirts are common, and many women wear long, loose skirts. Jeans or shorts are OK, too. You may wish  to bring a wrap or sweater to keep warm while sitting one out.
 
> Footwear is important. Soft-soled shoes (sneakers are OK) are strongly requested to protect the floor. If you can't carry in your shoes, please remove debris before entering the dance. Choose what you're comfortable in, but please leave the boots at home. Heavy or hard soles can damage the finish on the floor; please help us take care of the venue.
   Socks are recommended to prevent blisters; dancing in bare feet is not recommended.

> If you can walk, you can dance! No special skills are needed to learn contra dance. You should know your left from your right, and be able to follow spoken instructions. Be willing to learn, smile a lot and always ask questions.
 

> A common concern of new dancers is "What if I mess up?"  You will, and it's OK!  Really! 
Every dancer in the room will sometime miss a call, go the wrong way or forget a figure. Everybody else in the line gets them back on track. We'll do that for you, too. Don't worry about it!

> At the end of each dance, always thank your partner and always applaud the band and caller.
 
> Plan to come to a second dance. After your first one, you'll likely feel tired and a little confused from all the new stuff. Come back next month!  It will all seem familiar, you'll remember most of the figures, and you'll see a lot of faces you recognize. You'll be part of the family.
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