Let's chat at Ooh La La! I worked with my alma mater to create a contra
dance club when I was an alum living in the area working for a nonprofit
and students were interested in bringing contra to the campus.
I've also worked with a few other universities and students since then.
I've just seen your latest message regarding your campus decision to not
allow new clubs, I've seen similar situations occur as a result of schools
trying to direct students toward collaborative work. This was true for my
As a result the contra dances were "hosted" by a few already existing
organizations who agreed that contra fit their mission and had staff
members who wanted to support the club happening. Examples in our case
included the Center for Women & Gender Action, our non-secular Office of
Religious Life, Student Activities Office, and I think the Dance Department
as well as support from the Health &Wellness Office because it was an
Anyway, it was a grand mix and as a result, they also helped with publicity
and talked it up a lot because they had a stake, if you will, in the
success of the endeavor.
Anyway, we shall see each other soon (right?! I hope so!) and I'll share
the many more thoughts, and details of how it came together, plus some
other examples I've been on the periphery of :)
On Tue, Jun 21, 2016 at 4:07 PM via Organizers <
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1. Re: University contra clubs
(Marie-Mich?le Fournier via Organizers)
Date: Tue, 21 Jun 2016 08:38:48 -0400
From: Marie-Mich?le Fournier via Organizers
To: Brian Gallagher <gallagb(a)gmail.com>
Cc: Marie-Mich?le Fournier via Organizers
Subject: Re: [Organizers] University contra clubs
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="utf-8"
Thanks Brian, this is very informative!
Unfortunately I had a nasty surprise when I looked up how to create a club
at McGill only to discover they currently do not allow new clubs because
they have too many. I will have to rethink the idea. I didn't see any
traditional music club in their listing, which is unfortunate as they may
have been a good option for a partnership, but I will go through them all
again to see if I can find an existing club that we might convince to work
Thank you everyone
On Tue, Jun 21, 2016 at 2:28 AM, Brian Gallagher via Organizers <
While I do not currently work with a student organization at a
my profession is working with student orgs at
Every school really is different in their bylaws and what is and is not
I've seen a lot of different things to be
At one school in the south, the christian based organizations partnered
with the swing club and had a large swing dance which included a lesson.
They did this 4x per year and got a few hundred people each time (between
local swing dancers, students who were in the swing club, and then
christian students looking to learn or try something new).
I think it is U of Chicago (or maybe it is UIC) that has a beautiful
hall, they use a student club to 'rent'
the hall for occasional contra &
Most schools will require that your club have a faculty or staff advisor-
typically this person just signs paperwork. They may or may not be an
active member in the organization. Have your students go to their
professor to ask them if they want to sign on.
As for what does the club do? It's really up to you- they can co-sponsor
dance on the college campus, or just be an
'enthusiast' group (like ski
club) that meets every so often but the real purpose is to help
rides to the local dance. It all really depends
on the momentum and what
resources the campus offers. Some campuses will allow you to apply for
funds (think the same as a federal or state government- so, this is a
a year type process most often - requires
pre-planning, not a last moment
Most schools will require your club to have a constitution- they should
have a template for you to follow. The club will also need X officers
members to be a 'real' club. The school
should have some sort of
administrator (person in my type of job) who can help guide you with this
stuff. If you message me (off the list) the name of the university, I
could do some looking around to see if I know the person or can find
name on a website for you.
Feel free to contact me off-list if you need more help & good luck!
Sometimes the 'college club' is a great thing & sometimes it is... not
really worth all of the effort. Usually it all rides on how much effort
time) the individual student is willing to put
into the project- with
balancing it with their classes, part time job, sweeties...etc.
On Mon, Jun 20, 2016 at 11:42 PM Mary Anne Eason via Organizers <
> The University of Maine in Orono has a Traditional Music and Dance Club
> dance which promotes contra as well as other kinds of dance (though
> essentially now I don't think it does anything but contra). In the past
> they hosted a few small contras on campus (in dorms, the dining hall or
> large hallway somewhere where there was
exposure to other students).
> Recently they have gotten funds from the student government which covers
> the entrance fee for students to the local dance each month in Orono
> free pizza! The contact person is Anthony
> anthony.viselli(a)maine.edu, who also heads up the band that plays at
> Mary Anne
> On 6/20/2016 1:56 PM, Erik Erhardt via Organizers wrote:
> Hi Marie,
> A little history for our group, then a suggestion that we plan to follow
> this coming year:
> At the University of New Mexico (unmcontra.org
) FolkMADS (our local
> dance org, folkmads.org
) put on 8 dances in
year Aug 2014 - May 2015,
> then we formed a student organization and put on 8 dances, the last 4
> a student band Aug 2015 - May 2016.
We've had low attendance (10-30
> dancers, about half students), but with returning regular dancers.
> put in a lot of energy without much growth,
though the student band (
) was a very positive outcome.
> This coming year we plan to *partner with other large student
> organizations and put on joint events*. This will help guarantee larger
> dances, will help with advertising, and will get people who already know
> each other to dance together. I think this will increase the appeal of
> We can also do more if we leverage ways to use student organization
> Good luck!
> Erik Erhardt
> (505)480-4462 StatAcumen.com
> On Mon, Jun 20, 2016 at 11:34 AM, Marie-Mich?le Fournier <
>> Hello everyone!
>> I have recruited some of our younger dancers to start a contra
>> at their university to help us bring in
more people to our dances in an
>> effort to be sustainable. However, none of us are quite certain what's
>> best way to proceed with this and what
exactly to do with this club.
>> you out there have associated university
or college clubs? Could you
>> in contact with the people in charge so
we can use their ideas and
>> experience with this?
>> Organizers mailing list
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