The San Francisco Bay Queer Contra Dance is hosting its ninth annual dance camp within the lush redwood forest of Monte Toyon, a beautiful camp facility near Santa Cruz, 79 miles south of San Francisco, where you'll be housed and fed and offered a weekend of gender-role-free dancing. Beginners are welcome. Contra is an exuberant, friendly, easy-to-learn American barn dance with roots in English folk dance. While many of our dancers are LGBT, we cheerfully welcome folks of any and all persuasions! Take a weekend away to dance, relax, make friends, and enjoy the lovely California redwoods.
Music: "Anadama" (Amelia Mason (fiddle), Emily Troll (accordion), and Bethany Waickman (guitar))
"Uncle Farmer" (Ben Schreiber (fiddle), and Michael Sokolovsky (guitar))
Contra Dance: Susan Petrick and Kelsey Hartman
Sound: Nick Cuccia
Anadama is a Boston-based contra band. The trio finds its roots in the traditional music of New England, Ireland, and Quebec. Infusing old and new tunes alike with a distinctly modern kick, it is dynamic, earthy music, played with vigor and honesty, and dance at its heart.
Uncle Farmer: With an Irish and New England sound at its core, the duo is known for its original dance tunes, modern twists on old favorites, and sets mixed with pop rhythms and improvisational flair. Their performances range from sweet and nostalgic to gritty and energetic, and their sound truly fills both the room and the hearts of dancers.
Kelsey Hartman identifies as a &ldquo contraholic &rdquo. She caught the calling bug at a workshop in 2012. &ldquo When calling, I consider myself a conduit between the dancers and the band, helping to channel the joy of the musicians' music through flowing, interesting dances.&rdquo Kelsey lives in Hayward, CA.
Susan Petrick has been calling and teaching contra for the past 17 years. She travels extensively, and is appreciated for her clear teaching, efficient guidance, and expert pacing, making even complex dances accessible to all. She lives in Mountain View, CA.
Monte Toyon: Nestled in a grove of coastal redwoods, Monte Toyon camp is adjacent to the Forest of Nisene Marks State Park in Aptos, California. Accommodations include shared rooms in Cary Lodge and Miller and Morris Dormitories, ranging 4-10 people a room. (If you have a lodging preference, including co-ed or same-sex options, please arrive when camp opens at 6:00 p.m. on Friday; rooms are not pre-assigned.) Meals are served buffet-style with vegetarian and vegan options. (Refrigerator space is available for those on special diets.) Monte Toyon also offers hiking trails and a beautiful rhododendron garden.
Bedding: Campers bring their own sleeping bags or sheets, blankets, and pillows. Local dancers can help those coming by plane: please provide bedding to help lighten a traveler's load and save on baggage expenses. If you can provide/would like bedding, please check the box on the registration form.
Non-gendered Housing: This year Cary Lodge and Morris Hall will again have no gender designation--neither will bathrooms in the dancing and dining hall areas. If you require a bed in a gendered room, please indicate so on the registration form and space will be reserved for you.
Dance camp opens at 6:00 p.m. on Friday, April 7. Dancing begins Friday night at 8:00 and runs through 3:00 p.m. on Sunday. Expect a weekend full of contra dance (accessible to all levels), to include special sessions for beginning and advanced dancers.
If you can offer a ride or need a ride to/from camp, please let us know on the registration form. We will help match riders with drivers. Flying? Consider San Francisco, Oakland, or San Jose airports. There is shuttle service from S.J. Airport to downtown Aptos; campers can then take taxis to Monte Toyon or call organizers for rides.
You can help your fellow campers by donating to the scholarship fund: please include a separate check to SFBQCD with your mail registration or click the "Donate" button below to make a contribution online with a credit card or PayPal account. We are a nonprofit organization with 501(c)(3) status, so your donation is tax-deductible. Many thanks!