Contra Dance Links for
the Great Lakes region
of the United States
Sites and Pages
West Virginia |
Bands and Musicians |
This page is devoted to listing contra dances in the Great Lakes
region of the United States along with bands, musicians, callers, and
organizations that are based in the region. URLs and e-mail addresses
are listed when available. New entries, additional information, and
changes in information are always welcome. Links to other pages in
the www.contradancelinks.com web site are listed at the bottom of the page.
New links are simply new to me, not
necessarily new to the World Wide Web. Change
in URL means that a link has changed its WWW address or
In addition to the many of the sites which have links to nearby
dances, the following provide expansive lists of dances in this
- The Chicago Barn Dance Company holds and helps sponsor a variety of dances in and around Chicago including dances on most Monday nights. They also include listings for area dances.
- The University of Chicago Folklore Society sponsors a Folk Festival in early February each year which includes a small amount of contra dancing.
- The University of Chicago
Folk Arts Community sponsors dances once a month along with a dance weekend in April.
- Mark Gaines provides a Chicago Traditional American Folk Dance web site which includes information about a variety of dances including contras.
- There is a new contra dance series in Logan Square in Chicago for all types of queer and non-queer people of different backgrounds and ethnicities together to have fun and to interact with each other with live music.
- The Plank Road Folk Music Society holds periodic dance parties in Downers Grove along with the other events which they sponsor.
- The Elsah Community Folk Dance is held on the 2nd Saturday of most months at Farley's Music Hall with a variety of callers and musicians. Change of URL (February 11, 2015) Updated date (January 3, 2015)
- In Geneva, the Fox Valley Folklore Society sponsors the Fox Valley Folk Music & Storytelling Festival in late August and/or early
September which includes a barn dance.
- Dan Saathoff supplies information about the old-time dances in Morris which are held, generally, on the 4th Tuesday of the month. Change of contact (January 3, 2015)
- The Illowa Community Folk Dance Series occurs in Rock Island at the Singing Bird Center, Black Hawk State Historic Site, generally but not always on the 1st Friday of the month from September to June. Everything from contras to British Historical Dances from 1651-1830 to a Welsh/Cornish Barn Dance is part of the schedule. Change from e-mail to URL (December 10, 2015)
- The Urbana
Country Dancers host dances on several Fridays each month. In addition, they hold an annual Jan Jam in
early-mid January. The site is maintained by Jonathan Sivier.
- Lynn Garren maintains the web page for the folks at the Fermilab Folk Club in Warrenville, outside Chicago, who hold dances on second (September to June) and third Sundays (November to April). Change of URL (September 18, 2015)
- One of the activities at the Indiana Fiddlers' Gathering in Battle Ground, held in late June, is a contra dance.
- The Bloomington
Old-Time Music and Dance Group dances each Wednesday and also on
the 5th Saturdays of the months that have them. In addition to their regular dance schedule, they sponsor Sugar Hill in Bloomington, a dance weekend in mid-late August and they hold an annual informal dance weekend in April in Bloomington called Mad Robin Romp.
- The Fort Wayne Traditional Music and Dance Society sponsors contra dances on third Saturdays, from September to May, along with music jams on a variety of dates each month.
- The Goshen Community Contra Dancing happens on the 1st Saturday of the month.
- The Indianapolis Traditional Music and Dance Group holds dances on Tuesdays with an occasional dance on Saturday. In addition, they hold the Gypsy Moon Ball in late October. Doug Becker provides the information.
- The South Bend Contra Dancers meet on the 2nd Saturday of each month at St. Paul's Memorial United Methodist Church/ Updated date and location (May 9, 2016)
- The Valparaiso Oldtime Dance Society holds contra dances on the 3rd Saturday of each month in northwest Indiana.
- The Contraire Dance Association dances in Berea every fourth Saturday with various callers and bands and most 3rd Fridays with open-mic calling and a pick-up band.
- Berea College sponsors an annual Christmas Country Dance School in late December in Berea featuring classes in instruction for a number of styles of dance.
- The Capital City Country Dancers in Frankfort hold dances on Fridays from September to November and from February to April along with some dances on 2nd Saturdays. Change of URL (June 18, 2015)
- Based on their schedule, the Lexington Traditional Dance Association generally holds contras on the first Saturday and second and third or fourth Fridays, each month. In early June they hold a "Dance Trance" weekend. Cary Ravitz provides the information.
- In late January, Lexington and Berea host the Swing Shift contra/swing weekend. Change of URL (January 19, 2015)
- The Louisville Country Dancers, hold dances on Monday nights and third Saturdays. They also host the Fleur de Lis Fling weekend in November.
- Dances are held in Somerset on the 5th Saturday of those months with 5th Saturdays.
- The Ann Arbor Council for Traditional Music and Dance provides listings for a number of Michigan dances including contras. Change of URL (January 19, 2015)
- The Ann Arbor Council for Traditional Music and Dance holds contra dances on 1st Saturdays along with a wide range of other activities including the Ann Arbor Dawn Dance Weekend in late February.
- The Lake Effect Community Arts Center sponsors dances on various Fridays and Saturdays at the Inwood Township Hall in Cook.
- The Michigan Dance Heritage Spring Weekend (Trillium Twirl) is held near Dowling in mid-April.
- The Flint, Michigan Contra Dancers meet on 1st (usually) Sunday afternoons at the Brennan Senior Center. Facebook page. Added new URL (December 30, 2016)
- The Grand River Folk Arts Society hosts contra dances in Grand Rapids on the 1st Friday of the month (there may be exceptions due to holidays, hall being booked, etc.) Change in dates (June 11, 2016)
- The Allegan Woods Folk Arts Cooperative hosts contra dances in Holland on the 3rd Friday of the month. Facebook page. Updated URLs (March 24, 2016)
- There's a series of dances in Howell, Michigan on various Wednesday nights at the Opera House with Glen Morningstar, Jr. and members of the Ruffwater Stringband.
- Country Dancing in Kalamazoo sponsors great American and English traditional dancing to live music. Contra and square dances are held on various Saturdays throughout the year, "Dance Just for Fun" on 1st Sundays, and occasional events on other days of the week.
- Ten Pound Fiddle provides a variety of activities, including contra dances in the Lansing area on first Saturdays. The pages are sponsored by the Ten Pound Fiddle Coffeehouse in East Lansing, Michigan.
- Also in the Lansing area is the Looking Glass Music And Arts Association which among its activities sponsors monthly contra and square dances on the 3rd Saturday of the month and hosts the Looking Glass Festival in mid-October. The combined efforts of Bonnie Wheeler, Hanno Meingast, and Julie Levy-Weston make the page possible.
- The Michigan Dance Heritage Fall Dance Weekend in mid-late September at Camp Cavell, on the shore of Lake Huron, near Lexington. The Weekend includes contras, squares, English country, couple dances, jamming, singing, baking and time to relax with friends! Change of URL (January 19, 2015)
- The Folk Music Society of Midland sponsors a dance including contras, squares, and circle dances on most 2nd and 4th Saturdays of each month from September to mid-May. In addition, they sponsor the Midland Folk Music Festival in late August. Change of URL (September 5, 2015)
- The Blissfest Country Dance series is held at various locations near Petoskey on the 1st Saturday of the month. Change of URL (November 29, 2015)
- The Wheatland Music Organization sponsors contra dances, among their other activities, on the 3rd or 4th Saturday of the month, in Remus. In addition, they sponsor the Wheatland Festival in early September, a Traditional Arts Festival in late May, and Winter Wheat in January.
- The mission of the Bayside Travellers Country Dance Society is to promote traditional music and dance. Contra and Square dances are held in various locations, on 2nd Saturdays, in and around Traverse City. Don Basch maintains the site.
- The Oakland County Traditional Dance Society hosts dances in Troy on the 4th Saturday of most months.
- The Tamarack Dance Association holds Community Contra and Barn Dances on the 3rd Saturday of the month in Duluth.
- The Lanesboro barn dance is held periodically throughout the year.
- The Tapestry Folkdance Center in Minneapolis hosts New England-style Contra on the most Saturdays of each month along with techno contra dances and family dances on various nights.
- Brian Haskell also mentions the 1st Friday dances along with a variety of folk music and dance events in St. Paul and Minneapolis.
- The Southeastern Ohio Traditional Dance Society holds dances in Athens which occur
generally, but not always, on the 4th Saturday of the month. Updated entry (January 23, 2015)
- The Northwest Ohio Traditional Music and Dance (NOTMAD) holds dances in Rossford on 2nd Saturdays and in Bowling Green on 4th Saturdays. Change of URL (July 23, 2016)
- Headquartered in Broadview Heights, the Northeast Ohio Folk & Traditional Music & Dance Society covers events and listings for the area.
- The Western Reserve Contra Dance hosts a monthly dance on the 2nd Saturday of each month at The Dublin Grange in http://www.westernreservecontradance.com/Canfield. New entry (February 28, 2016)
- The Cincinnati Contra Dancers sponsor contra dances every Monday night and the 2nd (generally) Saturday of the month. In addition, they sponsor an annual Pigtown Fling in March.
- Bob McKimm covers the contra dance scene around Cleveland including schedules, news, special events, and web links for dances in Welshfield, Cleveland Heights, Wooster, Peninsula and Chagrin Heights.
- Harold Cheyney provides information about the Big Scioty dances in Columbus. They are mostly on the first and third Saturdays, except for the occasional Friday.
In addition, they have:
- Also in Columbus is the All Soles contra dance series on a Friday of each month, September through May. All Soles switches to 4th Saturdays for a summer dance series in June, July and August.
- Dancers from the Cleveland/Akron area are sponsor a River Rendezvous Dance Weekend in mid-July in Coshocton.
- The Dayton Contra Dance Parties happen in Kettering on the 1st Saturday of the month from October to June.
- The Dandelion Romp in Oberlin is held in late April.
- And the Oberlin Contra Dance Club holds dances during the school year.
- The Northwest Ohio Traditional Music and Dance (NOTMAD) holds dances in Rossford on 2nd Saturdays and in Bowling Green on 4th Saturdays. Change of URL (July 23, 2016)
- Balance and Swing in Wooster holds dances on the 1st Saturday of the month from October to May and has information about other dances in the area. Susan English hosts the site.
- There is a new series of dances in Yellow Springs at the Bryan Center.
- There are dances now at Beloit College in Beloit on various dates.
- The Folklore Center in Dodgeville hosts dances on the 1st Saturday of the month.
- Clint Sprott presents information about the Squirrel Moon Dance Weekend held in Dodgeville in mid-September.
- There is a new dance series on 4th Saturdays at the La Farge Community Center.
- Clint Sprott provides information about contra dances in Madison on Tuesday nights plus a variety of dances during the weekends.
- The Prairie Hill Contra Dance sponsors dances on the 1st Saturday of the month in Pewaukee.
- The River Falls Community Arts Base in River Falls is a co-sponsor of a series of barn dances on the 2nd Saturday of each month.
- The Door County Folk Festival in Sister Bay is held in early-mid July and features contradancing among its wide range of dance and music
- The Door County Folk Alliance sponsors dances in Sturgeon Bay on a variety of dates along with holding other music and song events.
- The Ann Arbor Council for Traditional Music and Dance has
information about a number of bands and musicians in
- The Appalachian Celtic Consort plays traditional Irish and Scottish music mostly, but also a little old-time and some original compositions with a mix of the local flavor and is based in Charleston, West Virginia.
- Askin' for Trouble plays for dances, parties and weddings in the mid Michigan area. Music style is mostly old time with a bit of Irish thrown in. This 7 piece band brings as many as four fiddles, guitar, bass, and either banjo, flute, or mandolin depending on the tune. Music samples from a recent dance are at http://www.glasmacher.us/aft/. Contact Jsuppnick@hotmail.com via e-mail.
- Aunt Lu & the Oakland County Allstars come from White Lake, Michigan and includes Judi Morningstar amongst the members.
- The Band O'Goshen plays dances in Goshen and Fort Wayne. (e-mail only)
- The Doctor of Stuntology, Sam Bartlett who plays with a number of contra musicians and other types, has a site featuring his works. He is based in Indiana.
- Mandolin player Michael Mayerfeld Bell is a former member of bands such as The Fiddleheads and the Barn Owl Band has composed tunes recorded by the latter, Fool's Gold and Wild Asparagus. He is based in Wisconsin.
- The Berea Castoffs, composed of Alice White, Al White, Atossa Kramer, David Witherspoon and occasionally Elise Melrood play at various venues in Kentucky including the Berea dance.
- The The repertoire of the Big Bluestem String Band is an eclectic mix of fiddle tunes, old-time string band music, bluegrass and historic tunes, with an occasional sprinkling of swing and the blues. The band is based in Illinois.
- Black River Ironworks plays at dances in Ohio and neighboring areas. Change from e-mail to URL (January 23, 2015)
- While Michigan's Blue Water Ramblers mostly sing extraordinary folk music, they occasionally do play at a contra dance.
- Born Old is Doug Van Gundy and Paul Gartner. They have been playing together since 1997, and have learned or stolen from the best traditional musicians in the state of West Virginia. They play traditional old-time music from West Virginia with occasional forays into early country music from the 78 rpm era. Change in URL (January 23, 2015)
- Bob Bovee and Gail Heil play everything from square dance tunes to authentic cowboy songs to yodels & tin pan alley favorites and are based in Minnesota.
- Bowhunter is the Michigan-based square dance band formed from the driving rhythmic and melodic forces of Michael Beauchamp, Sam Cooper, Sam Herman, and Laurel Premo. New entry (May 29, 2016)
- The Boys of the Hock' play instrumental interpretations of Irish traditional music weaving together lively jigs and reels, stately hornpipes, and haunting airs to bring the sounds of Ireland to the hills of Appalachia and to their home base in Ohio.
- The BriarPickers come from Madison, Wisconsin and feature Brian Ray and Paul Kienitz. They meld traditional Appalachian style folk melodies with a classical string ensemble approach.
- Brittany Bay is an acoustic quartet from Cincinnati, Ohio which draws upon music from New England, the British Isles, and French Canada and takes a new approach to the traditional folk dance music. Change of URL (January 23, 2015)
- The Brook String Farm Band plays on a regular basis at the dances in Kalamazoo, Michigan.
- Matt Brown plays sprightly square dance tunes, haunting banjo pieces, and sings a variety of songs from the blues to ballads. He is based in Chicago, Illinois.
- Buzzstep is a Kentucky-based contra dance band including Cary Ravitz on fiddle, Richard King on piano, and Steve Bennett on drums.
- The Cat Wranglers are based in Chicago, Illinois. New entry (August 28, 2015)
- The Celery City Sodbusters are based in Kalamazoo, Michigan and play at dances in the area. (e-mail only)
- Celtic Myst, featuring Steve Hedges, Mark Moschell and Will Watt played at the Indianapolis, Indiana
dance on August 23, 2013.
- Changeling is the Celtic music duo of guitarist/singer Karl Clark Colón and fiddler Deborah Clark Colón.
- Chicory is a dance band based in Illinois. Not fancy. A couple of fiddles, a guitar, a bass, but it puts energy into the dancers' feet and makes them never want to stop.
- The Cincinnati Open Band is a volunteer group who plays for the Monday night contra dances in Wyoming, OH, about once every two months. Change of URL (January 23, 2015)
- The Clearfork Valley String Band is an Ohio based band with members spanning three generations. The band performs traditional fiddle-based music with a purity that transcends trends and gimmicks.
- The Coffee Zombies play for contra dances in Indianapolis and nearby areas and states fusing old-time, Celtic, French-Canadian, and original tunes with a hard-driving rhythmic base. Facebook page. Change of URL (January 23, 2015)
- The Common Taters have a bunch of fun playing and singing traditional old-time stringband music for dances, festivals, weddings, and other events in the Chicago area.
- The Ohio edition of the band Contraband includes Mark Barsamian (fiddle), Mark Delozier (piano) and Michael Sisson (bass). The band is available to play at contra dances in the area. (e-mail only)
- Hailing from West Virginia, the Contrarians are comfortable in a variety of styles and traditions: Celtic, New England, swing, and of course, old-time (Appalachian). They also write original material. With rhythmic variety, occasional glimpses of ethnic music, and unique improvisations, dancers let loose and never lose interest in the music. Change of URL (January 23, 2015)
- Contratopia, featuring John Goodin on the mandolin, Eric Sessions on the fiddle, Patrice Pakiz on keyboard, oboe, and percussion, and Pat O'Loughlin on concertina and banjo, is based in Minnesota.
- The Corn Potato String Band is a story of struggle, hard knocks and triumph. Essentially unable to cope with modern life, the members of this band are outcasts of society who survive by playing the lost music of the flatlands where they were raised. The band is based in Michigan. New entry (June 16, 2016)
- The Corndrinkers include Tom Duffee (banjo), Barbara Kuhns (fiddle), Linda Scutt (fiddle), Doug Smith (guitar), and Al Turnbull (bass), are based in the Springfield-Troy area of southwestern Ohio and have played for more than 25 years.
- The Cosmic Otters are the Chicago based duo of Jonathan Whitall on fiddle and Meg Dedolph on guitar playing Celtic music for contra dancing. Change of URL (January 23, 2015)
- Fiddle player Tom Cunningham is a member of the Coffee Zombies, The Hot Club of Derbytown and other bands and is based in Louisville, Kentucky. New entry (January 2, 2016)
- The Dancehall Desperados are a band of musical troubadours, bandits, and raconteurs ready to ride out from Amesville, Ohio to your dancing event. Square and Round, Line Dancing, Contra, Country Swing and Hippy Hoedowns. New entry (July 9, 2016)
- Dark of the Moon, a women's band based in Madison, Wisconsin, plays traditional music from the the British Isles, America, Scandinavia, and other countries for dancing and listening. They specialize in music for contradancing, such as jigs and reels, and also play waltzes, polkas, schottisches, folk songs, and other traditional music. Mary Mullen and Bonnie Gruber provide the information.
- Indiana's Dianna Davis plays with Troika, the Emily Ann Thompson Band, il Troubadore, Coffee Zombies, and leads a gypsy jazz combo. New entry (July 1, 2016)
- Bob & Lynn Dixon hail from Minneapolis, Minnesota and play as a duo and in bands such as Danebodium. Facebook page. Change of URL (January 23, 2015)
- Duck for the Oyster specializes in traditional music for dancing, from 18th and 19th century America as well as a variety of dances from around the world and play a regular dance series in northwestern Wisconsin
featuring squares, contras, reels, quadrilles, international, circle and round dances. Change of URL (January 23, 2015)
- Rachel Eddy plays fiddle, clawhammer banjo and mandolin with fellow old-time and Irish music musicians and is a member of the Morgantown Rounders in West Virginia. Change of URL (January 23, 2015)
- The band, Ennis Clare, based in Indianapolis, is a high-energy trditional Irish band featuring audience rousing traditional songs and high driving, foot stomping Irish tunes.
- Hailing from the Western Highlands of Connecticut, the east coast of Scotland, the Appalachians and Los Angeles, and meeting in the middle, Ann Arbor-born Ensoleil forms a truly diverse quartet. New entry (May 13, 2016)
- Entwyned plays compelling Celtic-influenced melodies and friendly old-time tunes, accented with influences from world music and swing, and driven by a lively rhythmic flow. They specialize in playing for contradances and other community dances, and we're known for our tune arrangements that match the figures of the dance, molding the dance energy and raising the dancers' spirits. The band is based in central Indiana. New entry (May 28, 2016)
- Paul Epstein is a singer-songwriter, fiddler, and member of such bands as the Contrarians and the Gypsy Stars. He lives in West Virginia. New entry (July 4, 2016)
- The Fiddle Fire aka Panning Family Band specializes in traditional, foot stomping fiddle music, as well as gospel bluegrass for events ranging from dances to corporate parties and is based in Michigan.
- Five-Oh! is based in Indianapolis, Indiana and plays at dances in the area. (e-mail only)
- Flying Fingers is a student run musical ensemble at Macalester College in St. Paul, MN, performing traditional folk music from the Scottish-Irish tradition and its descendants in America (old-time, contradance, bluegrass, etc.), with occasional forays into other forms of traditional folk music.
- Four Mile Portage is Brandy Forsman, Tom Maloney and friends and plays at dances in Duluth, Minnesota area. Change of URL (January 23, 2015)
- Frogwater is the acoustic musical pairing of John and Susan Nicholson who play Celtic to Delta Blues, Classical to Pop along with original material. Tbey are based in Wisconsin. New entry (July 2, 2016)
- The Full Moon Country Dance Orchestra (pdf file) continues to play at dances in Indiana and Ohio. You can contact Warren Waldron (e-mail) about the band.
- Gallimaufry is a high-energy, 5-piece contra dance band based in Ohio. With a sound largely based in Irish, Quebecois, and Old Time tunes, arrangements often incorporate elements of rock and funk to create powerful sets that enthrall both the ears and feet of dancers. New entry (July 1, 2016)
- Jamie Gans is based in Indiana and has played with a variety of groups there, in Minnesota and Canada.
- Dan Gellert is based in Dayton, Ohio, sings and plays banjo, guitar, and fiddle at various events including contra dances.
- Rayna Gellert plays fiddle with a variety of musicians and as a member of Uncle Earl. She is based in Lexington, Kentucky.
- The Golden Griffon Stringtet is an acoustic, instrumental, square dance & contra dance band from southeast Michigan whose repertoire includes traditional music such as jigs, reels, waltzes and airs from Irish, French-Canadian, New England and Southern/Old Time sources, as well as contemporary dance tunes written in the traditional style and a few contemporary pop melodies that they have corrupted into contra dance tunes.
- The Goldmine Pickers have been brewing a fresh blend of acoustic music for audiences in the U.S. and Europe since 2003 and play, occasionally, at a contra dance. The band is based in Indiana.
- Based in Minnesota, Greenwood Tree plays lively and lyrical renditions of traditional music from Ireland, Scotland, England, Canada, and Appalachia. Stu Janis maintains the information.
- The Grtipickers play old time Southern Appalachian string band music for anyone who enjoys it, and love playing for square and contra dances, block parties, bar concerts, garage door openers, and similar venues and are based in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul. New entry (July 2, 2016)
- The Gypsy Stars started as a band dedicated to bringing the traditional New England contra dance sound of fiddle and piano to West Virginia and include Paula Bickham, Paul Epstein and Rita Ray. New entry (May 16, 2016)
- Hawks & Owls is an old-time string band based in Michigan.
- Superb fiddling, tight harmonies, high energy and a direct link with tradition infuse the Hogwire Stringband which is based in Bloomington, Indiana. Change of URL (January 23, 2015)
- The Hoosier Recruits are based in Valparaiso, Indiana and play at that dance on a frequent basis. Change of URL (January 23, 2015)
- Ohio's Hotpoint String Band has the recipe for a wall of rhythm, and it is one of the most in-demand contradance bands in the country.
- Adam Hurt plays elegantly innovative clawhammer banjo on old-time music tunes in Minnesota.
- Hu$hmoney is a new northeast Ohio contradance band spawned from the ashes of the dance band institution, Strings & Things. With their feet rooted in tradition, Hu$hmoney explores these traditions while to creating a driving, surprising, and varied takes on old time standards, ethnic melodies, and original tunes. Change of URL (January 23, 2015)
- The Indianapolis Ceili Band plays, on an occasional basis, at the Indianapolis dance. New entry (January 23, 2015)
- The Java Junkies have played old-time music for dances in the Lansing, Michigan area since 1998 and include Doug Berch on banjo, Hanno Meingast on fiddle, Larry Johnson on guitar, and Steve Szilagyi on upright bass.
- Jericho is a group of old-time musicians who like to share the fun and variety of old-time music. Jericho presents an eclectic mix of American roots music including lively old-time fiddle tunes, lonesome ballads, early country vocal duets, mountain dulcimer, a variety of banjo styles and more! The band is based in Indiana. New entry (July 2, 2016)
- Jim's Red Pants plays traditional and original folk music, including waltzes, jigs and reels for concerts and dances in Ohio.
- Keltricity is a “Celtic World” band based in Kentucky which features contemporary, traditional and eclectic Celtic-influenced music from Ireland, Cape Breton, Scotland, England, Brittany, New England, French Canada and wherever! New entry (July 2, 2016)
- The Last Gaspé including John Kraniak, Paul Biere, Kevin Clark, Amy McFarland, and Maria Terres, play on 2nd Saturdays in Madison.
- Lisa and Heather Malyuk play at contra dances in Ohio and at other events in the area.
- The Mean Lids are only as mean as they need to be to keep the grit in their tones and the edge on their tunes, they are never seen without their signature cranial apparel. Spot them by their hats, their long lonesome sounds, and the @$$ kicking "chin-cello" grooves emanating from their mean, mean fiddle fingers. They are based in Urbana, Illinois. New entry (July 2, 2016)
- Minnesota's Mill City Serenaders repertoire encompasses not only square and contra dance music but also minstrel tunes and songs, fiddle rags, waltzes, polkas, schottisches, and the occasional parlor ballad.
- The Mink Run Consort are based in Frankfort, Kentucky. (e-mail only)
- Judi Morningstar, a contra musician, hails from White Lake, Michigan.
- Mud In Yer Eye has played dances in the Cleveland area since 1978 and is the oldest continuously operating contra dance band in the Cleveland area.
- Mulberry Street plays a mix of traditional, modern, and original compositions with a lush and richly textured sound and is from southern Ohio. New entry (July 2, 2016)
- New Bad Habits with Dave Landreth, Chirps Smith, Tim Foss, Andrew Gribble and Dot Kent, play old-time, the music that combines the traditions of immigrants bringing their music to America for more than two centuries; music intended to accompany ethnic as well as uniquely American dances. The members hail from Wisconsin, Illinois and Missouri.
- From Ann Arbor, Michigan, Nutshell. (e-mail only)
- Charlie Walden and Patt Plunkett are the duo Patt and Possum and are active contra and square dance musicians, performing for numerous such events each year. They serve as instructors at several music camps, giving instruction on fiddle, piano styles, traditional dance and vocal music. They are based in Illinois. New entry (June 30, 2016)
- The Picks & Sticks Stringband are a gumbo mixture of acoustical folk, swing, traditional, light pop, western, country, jazz, bluegrass, oldies, and ethnic tunes that captivates audiences of all genres based in Michigan.
- Rare Privilege features Maria Terres (fiddle) and Amy McFarland (piano) who play and teach Celtic-style music for traditional dancing, concerts, festivals, classes and workshops. The band is based in Wisconsin. New entry (May 28, 2016)
- Rattletrap Stringband, from Athens County, Ohio, features Matthew McElroy (fiddle), Tim Peacock (banjo), Frank McDermott (guitar) and Thom Herbie (bass). Change of URL (January 23, 2015)
- The Reel World String Band is headquartered in Lexington, Kentucky and features Bev Futrell, Karen Jones, Sue Massek, Elise Melrood, and Sharon Ruble.
- The Rhythm Rats is a Cincinnati based old time band.
- The Ripples are happy providers of contra dance music in the Midwest and beyond. Based in Cincinnati and Louisville, they put out a contemporary-meets-traditional sound with hints of jazz, bluegrass, world beats, and straight up pop hits. New entry (May 29, 2016)
- The riverrun country dance band plays for the South Bend, Indiana, contra dance and at other dances in the area. The five-piece band plays American, Scottish, Irish, and French Canadian tunes, along with Playford tunes for English country dances. New entry (May 9, 2016)
- The Root Cellar String Band plays at dances in the Bowling Green, Ohio area. Change from e-mail to URL (January 23, 2015)
- Chicago, Illinois banjo player Steve Rosen writes about his trips, t-shirts, music, and bands on his page.
- Rusty Pick Up is based in Illinois and plays at concerts and dances including Olde English, Swedish, German and folk dances offered in local halls. New entry (July 2, 2016)
- The Scarlet Runner String Band, now featuring Mike Ross, Dave Langdon, Larry Johnson, and Brian Hefferen started playing in Lansing, Michigan more than twenty years ago and continue to play at dances in the area.
- The Ann Arbor Council for Traditional Music and Dance provides information about the members of the Sharon Hollow String Band which is from Michigan.
- Lynn "Chirps" Smith has been playing the fiddle for more than thirty years and is well-known as an interpreter of fiddle tunes collected from fiddlers throughout Southern and central Illinois.
- The Squeaky Reels is a contra dance band based in Lexington, Kentucky which includes Cary Ravitz on fiddle, Brett Mason on piano, Eve Podet on Mandolin, and Shannon Arnold on bass guitar.
- Stewed Mulligan blends the old backwoods sound of West Virginia with clever Country Rock to create music that could have been birthed in a basement by the illegitimate sons of The Band.
- Strings and Things disbanded in 2007, but played at the dance series in Peninsula, Ohio and included Tina Bergmann, David Rice, Bryan Thomas and Heather Malyuk.
- Emily Ann Thompson plays Celtic fiddle a number of venues for concerts and dances. She is based in Indiana.
- The Tickwood Stringband is an old-time string band based in Ottertail County, Minnesota which has been playing music for dances and concerts around the region for over four years.
- The Tie Hackers are a 5-piece string band from Goshen, Elkhart and Plymouth, Indiana who started playing together in 2009 and played together before that in the Goshen Old Time Jam group. (e-mail only)
- The Timbre Wolves, based in Columbus, Ohio, are a five-member acoustic band playing "old-time", celtic, a little bluegrass, and a spot of jazz.
- The Top Drawer String Band featuring Brian Bishop (fiddle), Laura Stein (piano), and Joel Mabusis (guitar, banjo, fiddle), is based in Michigan.
- Mark Barsamian, Mark Delozier, and Zeke Hutchison comprise Trillium a contradance trio from Central Ohio. New entry (July 9, 2016)
- From a simple folk song to a snappy gypsy jazz tune to a wandering improvisational reverie, three-piece band Troika brings the rich and diverse landscape of Eastern European folk music to life for American audiences. New entry (July 2, 2016)
- From Ohio, the Turkeys in The Straw feature Barry Chern, Marian Funk, Jeanne Budde, Mike Allen, Bruce Dadisman, and Andrea Ardito. Harold Cheyney provides the information.
- The Tuscan String Band features Elizabeth Lamberti on fiddle,Jim Becker on fiddle, banjo and guitar and Jessica Ziegler on fiddle and banjo and plays at dances in Illinois.
- Ohio-based Upriver collects and performs Celtic, Appalachian, Bluegrass and American Folk Music. They play a mixture of traditional tunes and original music in the old time and Celtic tradition. New entry (July 9, 2016)
- Doug Van Gundy, from Elkins, West Virginia, plays old-time music on the fiddle for concerts and dances.
- The Volo Bogtrotters hail from the Chicago, Illinois area.
- Ohio's Zeke's Fancy takes traditional dance music from the British Isles and Appalachia and combines it with American swing to create a unique blend of music. New entry (July 2, 2016)
- Bob McKimm has a page on callers in Ohio. Change URL (February 2, 2015)
- The Ann Arbor
Council for Traditional Music and Dance has information about a
number of callers in Michigan.
- Tom Allen calls contras
and squares in the Detroit and Ann Arbor, Michigan area, along with
Toledo, Ohio. (e-mail only)
- Kathy Anderson
(e-mail only) is back in Ohio and is a regular caller there and
elsewhere. You can obtain more information about her on the Bay Area
- Tom Anderson calls at dances in Illinois. (e-mail only)
- Karen Andrews calls in the Goshen, Indiana area. (e-mail only)
- Reuven AnafShalom lives in Ann Arbor, and calls in Southeast Michigan and surrounding states. (e-mail only)
- Peter Baker has called in Michigan and others states and in Denmark and Austria. He leads dances in schools, churches and other public gatherings.
- Paul Balliet, caller from Ohio, has published a number of his dances.
- Chris Bischoff is
a caller from Taylorsville, Kentucky who also is a storyteller, banjo picker and lawn mower repairman.
Boerschig calls from Cincinnati, Ohio and lists the elements of
five of his dances on this page.
- Erna-Lynne Bogue calls in
Michigan. (e-mail only)
- Jim Brooks is a
caller in the St. Paul, Minnesota area. (e-mail only)
- Frank Buschelmann lives in Cincinnati, Ohio and calls there and in other venues in the Midwest. More information is available at the Cincinnati callers page. (e-mail only)
- Ann Carter walked into her first old-time community dance as a college student in 1992, and has never looked back. Since then she has become a dance caller, clogger, musician, and all-around enthusiast for old time music and dance -- which she sees as the one of the world's most joyful endeavors. She is based in the Twin Cities in Minnesota. New entry (September 25, 2016)
- Mike Clark started calling in 1990 in Kalamazoo and has since then branched out to other dance series in southern Michigan and Indiana.
- Phil Coleman calls in the Indianapolis, Indiana area. (e-mail only)
Collins is a caller of traditional American square and contra dances and an instructor of ethnic folk dance in the Chicago, Illinois area.
- Caller Jan Coray is based in Holland, Michigan.
- Deborah Denenfeld calls on a regular basis near her home in Kentucky and is involved in a number of dance activities including Dancing Well: The Soldier Project. New entry (October 11, 2016)
- Roger Diggle is a caller
from Madison, Wisconsin who can call a dance and accompany himself by
whistling. He also plays guitar. (e-mail only)
- Bob Duffy called at the Indianapolis, Indiana dance on December 16, 2014.
- Barry Dupen is a
contra dance composer and caller from Columbia City, Indiana (near
Fort Wayne). (e-mail only)
- Karen Dunnam calls throughout Michigan, Ohio, and Indiana. She specializes in historic re-enactments and special event dances, with afocus on getting beginners up and having fun. Change of URL (August 22, 2015)
- Barry Dupen learned to call and write contra dances in Charlotte, North Carolina in the mid 1990s and now lives in Indiana, having helped start the dance series in Goshen and Fort Wayne. New entry (October 11, 2016)
- Michigan caller Susan
English fell in love with international folk dance in the 1960s and taught her first dance class on a rooftop in China in 1980. Discovering contras and competitive swing dance in Washington, DC, Susan has called monthly contra dances since 1990 and now calls on a regular basis at the Wooster, OH dance.
- David Ernst calls
at dances in Indiana. (e-mail only)
- John Freeman is a Michigan
caller who calls contra and square dances, family dances, school
dances, and Civil War balls. He also leads caller workshops and music
and dance workshops for teachers and students. (e-mail only)
- Ken Gall lives in Indianapolis and has called throughout the Midwest and is extending his range to the Northwest United States.
- Beth Gray and Dennis Kempthorne
call at the Greentown, Ohio dance on the second Saturday of the month. (e-mail only)
- Margaret Glenn has called dances in the Cleveland and New York areas for the last 20 years.
- Steve Gold calls from
the Detroit, Michigan area. (e-mail only)
- Judy Goldsmith is
a caller from Kentucky along with being an avid bicyclist and Morris dancer.
- Michael Hamilton stepped off the dance floor and behind the microphone at his local dance in Peninsula, Ohio in 2008. He began dancing in college and, under the mentorship of Carol Kopp, is a mainstay caller in the northeast Ohio dance communities. He calls for local dances throughout Ohio and further afield (including PA, NY, KY, WI, IL, and GA), and has called for several dance weekends.
- Keith Harding
calls from Lexington, Kentucky. (e-mail only)
- Jerry Hickman is based
in Midland, Michigan. (e-mail only)
- Along with calling, Pat Hoekje is one of the organizers for the Bayside Travellers Country Dance Society in Michigan. (e-mail only)
- Bob Howell calls in the Ohio
area. He is also one of the co-authors of Dancing for Busy People.
(e-mail only for Bob, the book has a website)
- Sue Hulsether calls contras, squares, family dances, and school events Minnesota and Wisconsin along with being an Artist in Residence for schools with traditional American dance and music. Facebook page. Change in URL (June 15, 2015)
- Carol Jacobs has been
calling in the Ann Arbor area since 2002, and has been an avid contra
dancer since 1980. She also calls Family dances and English country
dances. (e-mail only)
- Frank Jenkins is a
caller from Berea, Kentucky. (e-mail only)
- Besides his nifty contra pages including a clickable map, Dwayne Johnson is a caller
in Kentucky and has called for more than 20 years.
Standifer Karamanski calls in Madison, Wisconsin.
- Dot Kent of Grayslake, Illinois, called at the Beloit, Wisconsin dance on February 21, 2015 and calls at other dances in the region.
- Richard King calls from
Lexington, Kentucky (e-mail only).
- Cassie Knight, from
Madison, Wisconsin, is known for calling contras and Scandinavian
dances. (e-mail only)
- Van Knowles is a
caller from Lexington, Kentucky (e-mail only).
- Carol Kopp calls at a number of the North East Ohio
Community dances and is into he third decade of calling dances.
- Over the past 15 years John Legge has enthusiastically embraced several dance styles, including contra, English country, international, Scandinavian, modern Western squares, two-step, and country-western line dance in and around Grand Rapids, Michigan. (e-mail only)
- Julie Levy-Weston lives in Lansing, Michigan, started contra dancing in 1992, and started calling in 1997. She favors dances that flow and tries to teach carefully and concisely.
- Tamara Loewenthal has been performing and teaching various styles of American and Celtic step dance for over 20 years and is based in Bloomington, Indiana.
- Drake Meadow is a caller and dance organizer based in Ann Arbor, Michigan. (e-mail only)
- Greg Meisner is a cantra dance caller and Morris dancer from the Ann Arbor, Michigan area. (e-mail only)
- Reid Miller calls contra, square, circle, wedding, and school program dances around Madison, WI, and mostly through Iowa, Missouri, Illinois, and Colorado. He also composes dances; plays tenor banjo, mandolin and ukulele; and tells stories in schools, libraries, fairs, festivals, theaters, and the like.
- Henry Morgenstein
calls, writes essays about contra dancing, and organizes contra dance
trips and camps in the United States and England. In the United
States, he is based in Michigan.
- Michigan caller Glen Morningstar calls dances for beginning to advanced dancers in a range of settings from school artist-in-residence to Saturday Night Contra & Square Dances to wedding receptions to scout camps to traditional dance camps across the USA, Europe & Scandinavia.
- Lindsay Morris (e-mail
only) calls in the Lexington, Kentucky area.
- Susan Moffet is a
caller in Kentucky. (e-mail only)
- Danika Murray began
calling in the spring of 2001 and in these past few years she has
traveled to call dances throughout Michigan (including Clawson, Ann
Arbor, Traverse City), to Indiana, Illinois and even Barcelona,
Spain. (e-mail only)
- Carol Ormand is a caller in Wisconsin, and has been calling dances since the spring of 1990, and has called at dances, weekends, and festivals all over the United States (and once in Denmark!). She includes some dance compositions on her page.
- Lisa Ornstein is
a caller from Chicago. She organizes dances, hosts the Celebration
Dance Weekend in Indianapolis and a dance jam series in Chicago.
- Roween Panning calls in Michigan. (e-mail only)
- Laurie Pietravalle is an avid dancer, dance caller, and dance organizer and is based in Michigan. New entry (June 11, 2016)
- Steve Pike, from Madison, Wisconsin, called at the Madison, Wisconsin dance on January 17, 2015.
- Edna Poore is a caller
in Lansing, Michigan. (e-mail only)
- Bill Pope calls
in Ohio and nearby states and shares with the beginning dancers his enthusiasm for contra, and programs dance evenings that balance more forgiving dances with some of the more challenging ones.
- Kate Power has been a contra dance caller in Columbus, Ohio since 2003 and is available for everything from dances to family reunions.
- Barbara Ramlow calls in
the Lexington, Kentucky area. (e-mail only)
- Cary Ravitz is a caller from Lexington, Kentucky who along with writing the essays Notes on Calling Contra Dances and Notes on Choreography for Duple Minor Improper Contra Dances keeps an extensive links about contra dancing.
- Mark Richardson is a
caller from Bloomington, Indiana. (e-mail only)
- Sue Robishaw calls dances for both private and public events. She is based in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. New entry (February 15, 2015)
- Charles Roth calls in
Michigan and has an unusual two-sided set of dance cards.
- Maggie Jo Saylor has been calling contra dances since she was fifteen, and contra dancing since she can remember. She currently resides in Chicago, IL. In recent years she has called at local dances and dance weekends all over the country. New entry (January 6, 2017)
- Dave Seboit calls in Michigan and Indiana and is based in Ann Arbor. (e-mail only)
- Jonathan Sivier is a caller from the Urbana, Illinois area who has been involved in traditional dance since 1987 and have been leading dances since 1992.
- Along with a fair amount of web page work for dances in Michigan,
Bob Stein also calls
- From Carbondale, Illinois, Joe Surdyk calls in Indiana, Illinois, and Missouri on a
regular basis. (e-mail only)
- Kath Tallichet is
based in Louisville, Kentucky and calls there and in Illinois. (e-mail only)
- John Teskey called at the Indianapolis, Indiana dance on April 15, 2014.
- Don Theyken has been calling dances here in Ann Arbor since the early eighties and is now calling contra dances on the second Saturday of the month at the Webster Church Community Building near Dexter MI.
- Darlene Underwood is a caller from Cincinnati, Ohio. Change of URL (February 5, 2015)
- Tom van Deusen calls at dance camps, community dances, weddings, private parties, and other events for adults or children in and around Michigan.
- Martha Vander Kolk is a dance caller from Ypsilanti, Michigan. (e-mail only)
- Sandy Vielmo calls from
Michigan. (e-mail only)
- Ed Vincent is from the Ann Arbor, Michigan area and has been calling contras since 2005 and calls out-of-state, too. His phone number is 734 -730-6919. (e-mail only)
- Alan Vlach has been dancing since 2000 and began calling in 2002 in Michigan. (e-mail
- Rachel Shapiro Wallace is a dance caller who strives to communicate the joy of dancing, whether she is calling at a dance, wedding, or event. She has called throughout the Midwest, Southeast, New England, and her current home, Chicago. New entry (October 11, 2016)
- Bob Walser is from Minneapolis, Minnesota and calls contras and squares and along with playing squeezebox, guitar, banjo and piano for contras and squares. (e-mail only)
- Robin Warner calls in
Michigan. (e-mail only)
- Paul Watkins, from
Chicago, Illinois, calls in Chicago and the Fermilab Folk Club just
outside of Chicago on a regular basis. (e-mail only for contact)
- Marlin Whitaker from Ann Arbor, Michigan calls at dances in the Great Lakes states. (e-mail only)
- Kenny Wilson calls on a regular basis at the dance in Chagrin Falls and other dances in Ohio. (e-mail only) New entry (September 19, 2015)
- While the list of his dances is gone, you can still e-mail Eric Zorn.
- The Chicago Barn Dance
Company is a not-for-profit association of people with a common
interest in New England Contra dance, traditional square dance and
American old-time music.
- The University of Chicago
Folklore Society sponsors a Folk Festival in
early February each year which includes a small amount of contra
- The Fox Valley Folklore
Society sponsors more than 100 folklife events every year in
Chicago's western suburbs, including concerts, sing arounds, old-time
community barn dances, storytelling gatherings, open mikes, and
Illinois' largest folk festival. Their listings include a large
calendar of events.
- The Augusta Heritage
Center of Davis & Elkins College in Elkins, West Virginia is
dedicated to making traditional music, crafts, dancing and folklore
available to visitors and residents alike.
- The Northwest Ohio Traditional Music and Dance (NOTMAD) does more than hold contra
dances. Change of URL (July 23, 2016)
- The Ann Arbor Council for
Traditional Music and Dance (AACTMAD) is a non-profit
organization dedicated to the promotion and preservation of folk
music and dance. They sponsor "traditional" music and dance events in
the greater Ann Arbor, Michigan area, including contra-dances,
English Country dances, and small-scale folk music concerts.
- The Ten Pound Fiddle
is proud to present concerts, dances and community events in the folk
tradition in the Lansing, Michigan area. The pages are sponsored by
the Ten Pound Fiddle Coffeehouse in East Lansing, Michigan, and are
maintained by Warren Armstrong.
- The Northeast Ohio Folk & Traditional Music & Dance Society has a site called Folknet which has
information about folk and traditional music, dance and related arts
throughout Northeast Ohio. Folknet is a not-for-profit educational organization that exists to nurture the development and expansion of a vibrant folk and traditional arts community of performers, organizations and advocates.
- The Tapestry
Folkdance Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota provides opportunities
to participate in the joys of dance and music from around the world.
Brian Haskell created the template for the page and Lydia McAnerney
- Folk Music Society of Midland, Michigan is
comprised of folk artists dedicated to promoting traditional music,
dance, and folklore and hosts a variety of events throughout the
year. John and Sharon Skaryd maintain the page.
- The Grand River Folk Arts
Society provides the Grand Rapids area with the best in
contemporary Folk Music & Dance.
- The Folk Circle Association of Berea, Kentucky is a tax-exempt, non-profit organization, whose mission it is to promote and develop folk music and dance. It is an umbrella organization for Contraire Dance Association, Berea Festival Dancers, Berea Celtic Festival, Hands Four Spring Dance, Rapa Bora, Lexington Vintage Dancers, Berea College Country Dancers and Fall Mountain Folk Festival. New entry (November 30, 2016)
This page is part of the Contrdancelinks.com web site. For more information about contra dancing, visit these other site pages:
Sites and Pages
Contra Dance Links Home Page
Rehoboth, MA | New
England | Mid-Atlantic
South Atlantic |
South Central | Great Lakes | Great Plains
Rocky Mountains | Pacific | Canada | Rest
of the World
Resources | All Bands and Musicians | All Callers | What's New
Festivals, Weekends, Camps, etc.
Waltzes and Scandinavian Dances |
Traditional and Old-Time Square Dances
Community Bands and Open Bands |
Open Caller Opportunities
Contra Dance Cookies
District of Columbia |
New Hampshire |
New Mexico* |
New York |
North Carolina |
North Dakota |
Rhode Island |
South Dakota** |
West Virginia |
*The Colorado link will bring you to Dancing on the Web. The Maine link will bring you to the Downeast Friends of the Folk Arts. The New Mexico link will bring you to the New Mexico Folk Music and Dance Society. The Utah link will bring you to Utah Contradance Information. These fine organizations and individuals already have complete listings for these states and there is no reason for me to duplicate their efforts.
**As far as I know, there are no regular dances or events in Mississippi, South Dakota or Wyoming, but I have created pages if something changes in the future.
Produced by Charlie Seelig
Last updated on January 6, 2017