Rum & Onions
Princeton Packet 5&rfi=6

'Rum and Onions'

By: Michael Redmond , Lifestyle Editor


Country dancers kick up heels for 23rd costume party

Back in the day, recalled Marge Scott of Princeton, the committee of 11 who was organizing Princeton Country Dancers' first Halloween costume dance couldn't agree on a name for the affair. "There was 'Jersey Lightning,' I think, and 'Apple Turnover,' and many other ideas. Then somebody just opened up a tune book and there was 'Rum and Onions.' So 'Rum and Onions' it was."

On Saturday in Princeton High School, Princeton Country Dancers attracted about 150 revelers to its 23rd annual Rum and Onions Halloween Contra Dance, which was preceded by potluck supper and the costumed Grand March. Dancers attended from all over the Princeton area and New Jersey and from several other states.

One can safely say that a good time was had by all. That's the entire point, Mrs. Scott made clear.

"We all dump our troubles and come and have fun. We dance with wild abandonment," she laughed. "The music is just so exciting. Country dancers are a community. Touching while dancing creates instant bonds between people. And everybody is welcome, everybody - couples, single people, everybody."

"Country" dances are one way of saying "contra dances," a form of folk dance that crossed the Atlantic with the British. People learn basic steps and patterns and dance to the direction of a caller - Saturday night's was David Millstone of New Hampshire.

Princeton Country Dancers is an active volunteer community organization, year-round. Information on their activities can be found by visiting

Return to the articles section of the web site.
Produced by Charlie Seelig
This page last updated on October 31, 2006.