Pennsylvania Square and Round Dance Federation

SemiAnnual Meeting

Held at the Knights of Columbus

Waynesboro, PA

October 2, 2016


The meeting was called to order by Presidents Tony and Diana Rock at 1:05 P.M. In attendance: Western PA (6); Susquehanna Valley (9); Central PA  (4); Delaware Valley (1); Western PA (0); Allegheny Valley (0); Laurel Mountain (0).

Tony Rock led the Pledge of Allegiance and Diana Rock gave the Invocation.

Secretary’s Report:  The secretary was unable to attend this meeting.  Tony Rock asked if everyone had read the minutes of the last meeting, since they were posted on the website. He asked if there were any changes or corrections to the minutes. Hearing none, a motion was made by Clyde Miles, seconded by Mike Matsko to accept the minutes. Motion passed.

Treasurer’s Report

as of September 30, 2016, to include April -Sept 2016

Items                                    Totals

Beginning Balance 04/1/2016




Refund of Seed money for 2015 Convention       


Dues from Clubs or Lifetime Membership


Total Income for April 2016 to Sept 2016





Total before expenses as of 9/30/16






Website up keep cost


BMI Convention expense for Permission to play music


Keystone Award


Annual Awards at Convention





Total Expenses April thru September 2016







Total Available Funds as of 9/30/16


Bank Statement as of 9/30/16



There was a Question as to whether the report include the finances for the state convention. It does not. A separate report will be given by Joe Nardi. Ted Rotwitt made reference to the fact that we seemed to have a good balance. Why did he hear that we were in trouble financially? It was explained that while we have a positive balance, if we enter into a contract with a convention site, they require a deposit, plus seed money, usually $2000. Ted went on to ask what we did right to show in increased balance, or what we did wrong because of the prior low balance. Tony explained that we had suspended some programs, and we also bought flooring for use at the conventions. While this flooring was expensive to buy, it saved us a lot of money over having to rent it each year.  A motion was made by Mike Matsko and seconded by Chris Styring to approve the Treasurers report. Motion Passed.


Federation Reports:

AVSRDF report Oct. 2, 2016

The fall meeting of the AVSRDF was held at the home of Tom Mohney on Sept. 11, 2016 with President Lou Stiles presiding. Last minute plans were completed for the AVSRDF dance to be held Friday Sept. 16, 2016 hosted by ABC Dancers. Callers will be Corben Geis and Tom Mohney with Nathan Parrot cueing the rounds. The dance will be held at the First United Methodist Church, 73 Clinton St. Greenville, PA 16125. The theme for the dance is Jimmy Buffet. A large part of the meeting was comprised of explaining and approving the updates to AVSRDF constitution. We thank Tom Mohney for all his efforts on this project.

ABC Dancers - The ABC Dancers were the host for the AVSRDF Dance on Friday, Sept. 16, 2016. Three squares and more enjoyed the square dancing to Tom Mohney and Corbin Geis. Nathan Parrot cued the round dances. A good time was had by all.

Saturday Dec. 31, 2016 is our New Year’s Eve Dance at the First United Methodist Church in Greenville, PA. We square dance to Tom Mohney from 9PM to 12:15AM.

Castle Paws and Taws - Castle Paws & Taws averaged 2-3 sets at their summer dances. Dances will be held weekly at Cascade Park until the end of October. Beginning in November we will be dancing at the First United Methodist Church on Decker Drive in Neshannock Township—north of New Castle. Beginning in January dances will be held twice a month at First United Methodist Church. Dates and times have yet to be determined.

Fiddle A Rounds - The club picnic was held on Thursday, July 14, 2016, at the Monroe Community Club in Knox, PA. There was an evening meal at 6:00 p.m. with about 18 members in attendance. They will meet again in December 2016, for their annual “Christmas on the River” event at the Allegheny Grille in Foxburg, PA.

Circle 8 Square Dance Club - Circle Eight Square Dance club is sad to report that their last dance is scheduled for Dec. 2016. They no longer have enough active dancers to support a club.

Shenango Valley Sashayers - The Shenango Valley Sashayers are dancing on the 2nd and 4th Friday of the month. They usually have about 2 or 3 sets at a dance.

Lou and Ruthie Stiles, Presidents AVSRDF


Central Pennsylvania Square and Round Dance Association

1.     On April 24th, the association held a Healthy Heart Dance.  The dance raised $538.00 for the Heart Division of the Divine Providence Hospital.

2.     On June 22nd, nine dancers left for Alaska on a trip sponsored by Country Twirlers.  The trip featured a land and cruise tour.  The dancers danced at the 50th state festival in Fairbanks, Alaska where the caller was Tim Tyl.

3.     On July 20th, the Friendship Squares and Country Twirlers danced at the Lycoming County Fair from 7-9pm.  After the dance they all had ice cream at the fair.

4.     Arrangements have been made for a tour of Claiborne Farms (home of Secretariat) for June 24th while we are at the National Convention.

5.     The Country Twirlers is sponsoring a trip to Hawaii where they will dance at their state convention in 2018.  We currently have 40 dancers interested in going.  The trip will feature dancing and touring of the islands.

6.     On September 25th, the association will hold a dance in the auditorium of Divine Providence Hospital for the benefit of the Cancer Division.

7.     Our clubs are dancing weekly with 2-3 squares dancing.   Most clubs are starting of have started fun nights in order to get new dancers.  The Country Twirlers have gotten five new dancers.


Federation of Delaware Valley Square and Round Dancers

Del Val's Spring Fling, which was held on May 1st, was fairly successful.

We needed to combine our Gradates Dance with the Annual Meeting due to scheduling difficulties.  Our Federation callers and cuers donated their time for a successful dance; the meeting was short and sweet.

Since that meeting there have been questions about our financial stability and even though it has been rumored that we don't have money to last more than one year, our clubs holding classes still expect us to continue to give out grants and even requested the grant program be expanded to ANY beginner classes, even those not graduating students at the Mainstream level (which is the lowest level danced at festivals, conventions, and our regular clubs).

Also, some of the dancers in Delaware Valley are sad that there will not be a Pa Convention in 2017.  There were some of who did attend and enjoyed this year's convention.

As far as future events, we have the Dance to See scheduled for Oct. 16 and the Membership Dance for Nov. 6.

One other noteworthy item would be that we are trying to urge our members to receive the newsletter by E=Mail in order to save printing and mailing costs; one of our largest expenditures due to lack of advertising.  Because of this we may have to curtail our e-mail service and restrict usage to only those who advertise in our DVD magazine and, of course, the State and National Conventions.

Respectfully submitted,Jane Styer

on behalf of Bruno Langewouters, DelVal President



SVSRDA reports that square and round dancing is doing well in the Susquehanna Valley. We currently have 13 active square and round dance  clubs. One of our member clubs, Fair Squares, just had their last dance since their caller, Al Groth, is retiring and the club membership had been dwindling in recent years.  We have added two round dance organizations this year…Bloxom’s Bunch and Red Rose Round Dancers.

Our Presidents Ball was held in April with Ted Lizotte calling the squares and Linda Prosser cueing the round dances with about 160 dancers in attendance. Our 2017 dance will be held on April 30th with Hunter Keller calling and Debbie Elser cueing.  Dance will be held in the York area.

Our Graduation Dance to honor our graduates from the just completed classes was cancelled this past year due to the death and funeral service conflict by one of our long-time callers, Gleason Crumbling.  He was known and loved by many of our area callers and dancers.

The SVSRDA Visitation program continues to be a very strong program attracting many dancers to clubs throughout SVSRDA. For the 2015-2016 dance year there were 806 individual visits made by our dancers and a total of 69.5 club visits. This year’s program is well underway and many visits have been recorded.

Our clubs have tried a variety of methods to attract new dancers to our class this year. Several things that seemed to have worked were yard signs placed throughout the community and window signs in our cars. We were also able to post articles in our local newspapers.

We anticipate a great dance year with many of our clubs planning dances with guest callers including Mike Sikorsky, John Marshall, Howard and Donna Williamson, Tom Miller, Ken Ritucci, Bill Harrison, Ken Bower, Hunter Keller and Gary Shoemake among those scheduled. Check our schedule online for details. Our clubs have a dance scheduled for New Year’s Eve in Mechanicsburg.


Jim & Carol Miller, Presidents SVSRDA

There was a discussion about the visitation Program that is being used by the SVR&RDA.   Ed Styring also answered questions about some of the activities that Central was sponsoring.  Tony remarked that reading the reports leads to discussion that is positive.

Western Pennsylvania Square and Round Dance Federation

            Not much going on near the end of the year.  All clubs have started new lessons in September.  I don’t know how many students until our meeting on October 18, 2016.

Our Federation will hold their Fall Festival hosted by Mountainview Squares to be held at Delmont Fire Hall, 2360 Route 66, Delmont, PA  15626.  Tom Miller and Norm Shaffor will be calling and Brad & Lenore Deibert cueing.  Dancing from 2:00-5:00 p.m. with dinner on your own.  Then dancing 7:00-10:00 p.m. with pre-rounds from 7:00-7:30 p.m.  A Chinese Auction and a 50/50 raffle will be held.  This is one of our 2 for 1 dances.  Costs for two dancers:  $18.00 all day, $10.00 afternoon and $12.00 for evening only.

            Looking forward to 2017.  We will have our Sophomore Dance (to be determined).          .

Respectfully submitted, Clyde & Judy Miles President, WPSRDF


Committee Reports:


General Chairmen Final Report

23rd PA Square and Round Dance Convention – 2016


Diana Rock thanked everyone for their support of the convention and thought it was a success.  Tony at this point commented that most of the unpaid registration were for callers and cuers. There were a few unpaid registrations that were given to other associations as advertisement, and the remainder were given to committee members as a token of appreciation for their hard work for the convention.  Diana praised the Pasquarelli Center for their attention to our needs. The only complaint received was that the advanced hall was too warm, but because of the climate control system, there was nothing that could be done. Halls were shifted around, and this seemed to help.

     We had a lot of fun planning and overseeing the convention and want to thank the following people for working so hard and making it a great experience. 

·        A fantastic committee

·        Dedicated callers and cuers

·        The many volunteers

·        All of those who donated beautiful baskets

·        All of the registered dancers

Business Manager:

Total income: $13,146.00

Total expenses: $11,527.42

Balance left for distribution to the PA Federation:  $1,242.15

Net loss for the 2016 Convention: ($381.42)    this includes the $2,000 seed money received from the PSRDF.   The account will be closed once all checks have cleared.

NOTE 1: There is one registration "roll-over" of $70 due to a couple for a future convention registration.  This amount is included in the money returned to PSRDF.  At the time of the next convention, a request will be made to PSRDF to transfer this amount to the next convention for that registration.

NOTE 2: The expenses ($376.43) for mailing the convention survey form is considered PSRDF business. 

 Bob Engel asked how much was spent on rooms for the committees. Joe said there was $ 1380 spent on rooms. He went on to explain that only the committee chairman were comped rooms. At this point Tony went on to say that the hotel gave us rooms as consideration for holding the convention at their hotel. He went on to say that we only had to buy 3 rooms. Both Joe and Tony defended the free rooms to the chairmen as compensation for their travel and expenses on behalf of the convention. Tony said he was pleased with the convention, in that we did not give back all of the seed money, but we did not have to deplete the treasury.

Tony said one of the comments he has been asked by some people is why we don't have more disclosure. He said he thinks we try to be as transparent as we can. He doesn't understand the animosity that the federation has with the regional federations. Tony asked for questions. Clyde said that some people, especially first time attendees to the meetings, are under the illusion that committee people are paid. He said they are not given enough information when they first become involved to know what is actually going on, and he thinks is the problem. He thinks new people should be given more information, and if they do have a problem, they should bring it up formally, not talk behind the backs of the PSRDF and spread rumors.

Ted commented that in spite of the doom and gloom we have been hearing, if we could provide conventions in the future and only lose $ 381, that with the dues of $ 2 per person, we should be able to cover expenses. Ed commented he thought the doom and gloom idea came about because of holding the convention at State College, where there was a charge for every little thing. He said they were not interested in working with us, but only in lining their own pockets, and it cost the federation dearly.

Tony said that when we look at a sight, we not only have to look at the facilities, but also what is included in the price. In the case of Penn Stater, Tony said that the chairman was not to blame, but that management had changed since we had been there last. Mike went on to explain that when the convention site was booked 3 years ahead, they looked at past conventions and felt that they would be able to break even. However, because of the decline in attendance, this was not the case. They were able to negotiate better room rates, but little else. The only options were to cancel out, or move ahead, knowing that there would be a deficit. Diana R stated that this is why we need a healthy state treasury, because we don't always know what is going to happen, and we have to be prepared to pay our bills.  Tony stated that the free registrations to callers and cuers was not a bad thing, sort of an incentive and a way of thanking them for their time. He said that we do want have a convention and we do want to cut costs, so he is open to suggestions. He said that we tried things at this convention that we never did before, and he got a positive reaction from the dancers. Joe said that overall, the conventions have made money for the federation. He said the mandate was to break even, not to make money, but that has happened.


Registration and Housing:

Total number of dancers registered for the convention: 278

Total number of paid dancers:  204

Total number dancers registered for Thursday night Trail-In Dance:  157

Total income from registrations: $7,356 (This includes $200 refunds and $70 registration “roll over” for the next PSRDF convention)

The Registration Chairmen do not have state information for some of the walk-ins at the convention; thus, the out-of-state dancers plus the PA dancers does not add up to the total number of dancers.  Of those who did, here’s the count.

Breakdown of people registered from other states:

1          California                              2          Connecticut                         3          Delaware

2          Florida                                   9          Maryland                              4          Mass.

5          N. J.                                        2          N.Y.                                        4          Ohio

2          Texas                                      6          Virginia                                  1          WV

Breakdown of dancers registered from PSRDF Federation/Association (228 dancers) Not everyone listed a federation membership.  All of these figures include callers, cuers, their dance partners and all other dancers. 

6          Allegheny Valley                 21       Central PA                            27       Del. Valley

27       Laurel Mt.                             31       Susquehanna Valley                     

46       Western PA

This year the convention tried a 2 ribbon system for registration (one to be worn prior to the convention and a different color to be worn at the convention).  The Registration Chairmen felt that this new system worked very well.  Overall, they received only one complaint.  Otherwise, the dancers were happy, very friendly and having fun.

Service Report:

 Bill Cominsky, Sales Manager of the Pasquerilla Conference Center and his staff provided exceptional service in the facility set up and was very prompt in making the requested changes in the halls as scheduled in the BEQs.  The only complaint received was that the Advanced Hall was not cool enough for dancing in comfort. This condition was uncontrollable because of a fault in the climate control system. The Advanced Hall was offered to use the Round Dance Hall, Phase 2-3 during periods that it was not utilized. There also was a set up change made in the Mainstream Hall, during the convention on Friday, to reduce the noise level that was entering the adjacent round dance hall.  The facility provided several eating options including a Grab and Go at the convention center, a buffet in the hotel, and of course ice cream with a variety of toppings.  We had two vendors, Sew-Em-Up Fashions and Suzie Q Creations.

Flooring Report:

 Thank you to all who helped with the installation of four rooms of square dance flooring. We had approximately 12 people helping with installation and got three rooms done in 3 to 4 hours on Thursday. Friday morning we installed the fourth floor in 45 minutes. Everything went together well. When Saturday evening came, the last full day of dancing, we took three of the floors up in 1- 1/2 hours. On Sunday morning we took up the fourth floor.  The flooring chairman was able to borrow a trailer to transport the flooring thereby cutting the expense to the convention.  The Pasquerilla Conference Center provided 1800 sq. ft. of wood flooring which they set up in our round dance halls.


Square Dance Program:

This year we had mixers, line dancing, pool dancing with 9 dancers and a baby, a dance on the bridge to the incline with 3 squares, Intro to Advanced, Two couple dancing, an Intro to DBD (twice), Intro to Challenge and Intro to Hexagons all on Friday staffed by callers.  On Saturday, we had workshops on Intro to Advanced, 6 couple/rectangle dancing, Intro to DBD, a seminar of “How to start a Handicapable Square Dance Program” all staffed by callers.  Jeremy Butler did a session for callers on Friday from 9:00 a.m.-10:00 a.m.  There were approximately 25 folks in attendance, but only 6 callers.  It was designed to talk about “The Sustainable Square Dance Effort” which is similar to Jerry Story’s program.  The competition dance was moved to Saturday during the Ceremonies and Parade of Banners in hopes of encouraging more participation. We extended the deadline to get 2 squares.  The PLUS hall held 18 squares the first ½ hour on Saturday evening for Tim Marriner.  It had about 14 squares for Jeremy Butler on Thursday and about 8 squares on Friday night.  Attendance varied between 2 and 5 squares throughout the daytime hours.  Initially we had 29 callers scheduled plus the 2 paid callers (Jeremy Butler and Tim Marriner).  Because of illness and other circumstances 4 callers had to cancel within 2 weeks of the convention.  Other callers who had filed their information on time and who had requested more spots were used to fill these missing spots.  The Saturday Caller’s Breakfast hosted 32 callers and partners.  Art LaVigne talked about “Making Every Dance an Event” in terms of using time wisely and generating energy and an inviting atmosphere. 

Round Dance Program Committee Activities Summary:

1.    Sent Invitation letters and Questionnaires to 38 RD Leaders in November 2015.

2.      Received 10 acceptances. (See list below)

3.      Developed SD/RD schedule in coordination with the SD Program Chair, Barb MacDonald.

4.      In cooperation with the 10 staff cuers, developed the final Round Dance program.

5.      Made masters of the complete SD&RD Schedule for reproduction and distribution to the dancers.

6.      Made masters of the Programmed Round Dances for reproduction and distribution to the dancers.

7.      Made Wall Posters for each hall for each session showing the schedule and cuers.

8.      Monitored both RD halls at all sessions.

9.      Conducted Sat. morning breakfast program for all cuers. Discussion topic: Frank Hartzel - Roundalab.

10.                         Published Syllabus of Round Dance Teaches.

11.                         MC'd Friday Night Showcase of Saturday RD Teaches.

12.                         MC'd Parade of Banners.

Round Dancing Summary:

In Round Dance Hall:

Phase 3, 4, 5 Dancing: 8 hours

Phase 2, 3 Dancing: 7 hours

Phase 5 - 6 Dancing: 11/2 hour

3 Friday Teaches: Phases 2, 3, 4.

4 Saturday Teaches: Phases 2, 3, 3, 4.

Three 1 hour workshops: 3 hours

Two Showcases: 1 hour

In Square Dance Halls:

Rounds in SD Halls: 24 dances

Extra Activities:

Caller/Cuer Breakfast & Program: 1.5 hours

Thursday Trail-In Dance: 2.5 hours (Roy Gotta, cuer)

Sunday Trail-Out dance: 1.5 hours


1.      Carter & Ruby Ackerman 500 E. Marylyn Ave.,B-27 State College, PA 16801 814-238-8949

2.      Russ Booz 1606 Horace Court Bensalem, PA 19020 215-245-7898

3.      Tom Denniston & Ellen McCabe 315 Cornerstone Ct. Oxford, PA 19363 908-472-2472

4.      Brad & Lenore Deibert 142 Green Lane Ext. Greensburg, PA 15601 724-309-8270

5.      Carla & Rich Eilenfeld 1384 Martin Rd. Tarentum, PA 15084 412-224-7132

6.      Roy & Betsy Gotta 2 Laurel Pl. North Brunswick, NJ 08902 732-249-2086

7.      Bruce & Mary Anna Haislip 2552 Fernwood Rd. Wintersville, OH 43953 740-264-9428

8.      Frank & Sandy Hartzel 2328 Warrensville Rd. Montoursville, PA 17754


9.      Kathy & Dan Koft 1837 Dorchester Dr. York, PA 17408 848-391-9153

10.                         Nathan Parrott 21 Memorial Dr. New Castle, PA 16102 724-730-7963



1.      We ran on schedule because we programmed 3 rounds & 2 cuer's choices per 20 min. session.  We would eliminate one of the cuer's choices if we were running behind schedule.

2.      Because we had all day on Friday and Saturday for teaches, we had plenty of time allotted for each teach.

3.      Having one hour workshops before 3 of the teaches worked out well because dancers were better prepared for the teaches.

4.      We had excellent wooden floors in both of the round dance halls, furnished by the convention center.

Respectfully submitted, Carter & Ruby Ackerman, 2016 RD Program Chair couple

Carla & Rich Eilenfeld, Directors

Program Book:

Ad Details:

·        Sold:

o   Back Cover (South Central PA Callers & Cuers Association)

o   Inside Cover (Pasquerilla Conference Center)

o   No Full Page ads (1 restaurant intended to buy, but cancelled)

o   7 Half Page ads (AVSRDF and WPSRDF dances, 3 personal, 1 club, 1 callers association)

o   1 Quarter Page ad (AVSRDF wishes)

·        Reciprocal Donation:

o   2 Full Page ads to WASCA and VA State

Booster Details:

·        24 booster sheets received

·        341 individual donations

·        Largest club donations: Perky Promenaders of Del Val - $142, Friendship Squares of Central PA - $95

·        Largest federation donations: Western PA - $207, Del Val - $204

·        Booster winner: SVSRDA - Palm Squares - Sue Hein

Printing Details:

At press time, there were registrations requiring 174 books. Last year, there were 24 walk-in books required. The decision was made to print 210 books to allow for additional walk-ins this year.  At the end of the convention, there were about 32 books remaining. Thus, there were probably 178 books given out, or 4 walk-ins, assuming there were not extra books printed but not charged for by the printer. At $1.09 per book, we lost about $35 on the unused books, which might be tolerable.


Social and Special Services:

            Once again we want to thank all of the Federations/Associations, clubs and individuals who donated 27 beautiful baskets.  The share the wealth went well all three days with Friday evening being our largest. For the Caller/Cuer lounge the Social and Special Events chairperson made sticky buns and whoopee pies, and had a small variety of snack bags.  The callers seemed to enjoy what was provided for them and had nothing left over except items that can be used in the future, coffee, tea, hot cocoa etc.  Naomi also said that the dancers enjoyed having the 50-50 ticket drawn in front of the dancers in the plus hall. Tony mentioned that this could be put in the book for the next chairman. Tony, as chairman, thanked all the associations/federations for their help, and for the baskets.


The Showcase of Ideas tables were set up in the lobby and were well viewed. 

·        "The Sustainable Square Dance Effect" seminar had approximately twenty-five with Jeremy Butler controlling the discussion. 

·        "Pool Dangle Dance" had 4 couples having a great time in the pool.

·        "Sewing Seminar" conducted by Donna Klaiss had 7 in attendance.

·        "How to Start a Handicapable SD Program" had approximately 20 in attendance with Corbin Geis leading the active discussion.  Many informative ideas and concepts were introduced.  A well worth seminar.

·        "The New Approach" conducted by Tony Rock, Joe Nardi, and Mike Matsko was well attended and became a heated discussion with a number of ideas to be considered by PSRDF.


Tours and Publicity:

JOHNSTOWN FLOOD NATIONAL MEMORIAL TOUR:  Eighteen (18) dancers registered for the tour. A 15-passenger van was rented for the 25-minute drive to the Memorial.  In order to save additional transportation costs, Gary Vioral agreed to make available his personal vehicle for the additional people.  Five of the registrants had Senior National Park passes which enabled those cardholders plus three others to enter without charge. Accordingly, we all entered free of charge.  In addition to the Visitor’s Center, we saw the remains of the reservoir, the dam, and part of the clubhouse, all of which are maintained by the National Park Service.  Lunch was arranged with a local restaurant. The average cost of the lunches was less than $10. At the end of the tour three dancers went to the Grandview Cemetery to view the “Unknown Plot” which contained the graves of the 750 unidentified flood victims.  Everyone seemed pleased with all aspects of the tour.

First Aid:

The following items were reported at this convention:

Band aids - 5

Moleskin - 3

Shoe tapings - 4

Ibuprofen - 2

Redressing of surgical bandages - 5 X

Blisters - 2

Wrapping of rubbing toes - 2

Splinter removal - 2

No major injuries or accidents were reported or treated for this convention. Thank you for the ongoing support of the emergency system. 

Solo Dancers:

This was my first time doing anything for a singles hall and lessons were learned. The first solo get together should be later in the day than the eleven o’clock in the morning we had. A lot of the dancers hadn’t checked in. The phone calls to the solos before the convention helped to have most of them at the dinner and scenic ride on the incline plane. Information by flyer helped also but should have included more times for the events. 

Respectfully submitted by Tony & Diana Rock

23rd PSRDF Square and Round Dance Convention

General Chairmen

Suggestions for future conventions:

1.       Stuffing the envelopes went well with just the Registration Chairmen doing the work.  However, it would have been nice to have had all the materials to be stuffed available at the designated time for stuffing.

2.       Continue with the two ribbon registration process.

3.       In view of the declining round dancers attending conventions, it may be unnecessary to have a separate Phase 2-3 hall.  It was the opinion of the Round Dance Program Chairmen that the Phase 2-3 dancers were dancing in the Plus Hall where 2 + 2 was offered.

4.       It has been recommended by other sources that the Plus Hall alternate Mainstream and Plus rather than Plus and Phase 2-3 rounds.

5.       The competition dance was moved to Saturday during the Ceremonies and Parade of Banners in hopes of encouraging more participation. The sign up deadline was extended to get 2 squares.  The Square Dance Program Chairman suggested we no longer do the Competition Dance, since it was difficult to get both dancers and callers.

6.       Request cell phone numbers on the registration form.

7.       Since the sound costs are becoming prohibitive, it is suggested that the convention consider alternative ways to provide sound.

8.       The callers and cuers pay for registration up front and after the convention they are reimbursed their registration fee.

9.       Try to solicit more area business advertisements for the program book.

10.   These are the suggestions regarding future tours:

a.     An itinerary should be emailed to all registrants several weeks prior to the tour outlining the day’s activities/events.

b.     Rental Vehicles for transportation should be arranged at least 60 days prior to pick-up. Large vans are in short supply during the summer months.

c.      Lunches should have a maximum limited cost per person. Buffets restaurants should be considered since one-price meals can be cost effective.

d.     Request cell phone numbers on the tour registration form instead of landline numbers.

e.     Remind participants that they should carry with them ID which identifies them as seniors; also various passes that offer discounts and or reduced prices can further curtail costs.

f.       Rain gear including umbrellas might be suggested. Weather can be unpredictable!

Respectfully submitted by Tony & Diana Rock

23rd PSRDF Square and Round Dance Convention

General Chairmen




Caller/Cuer Report:

 No Report.        Carter and Ruby Ackerman


Showcase of Ideas:

The PA showcase was transported to and from Iowa for display at the 65th NSDC.  It was also displayed at the PSRDF Convention in August.  While at the PSRDF Convention the window blind display broke.  We will look at it and decide if it is repairable.  It is currently housed at our home in Pittsburgh.  If anyone would like to display the showcase let us know.    

  Tony and Diana Rock



All five Federations/Associations have submitted their membership lists for 2016 and these have been compiled into convenient reports that are available for official use.   The following table provides summary statistics for the past four years.














































Submitted 4/3/2016   A. Joseph Nardi

Joe also took this time to discuss the questionnaire that was sent to all dancers of record.  There were 73 surveys returned, of those, 81% had attended previous conventions, and 19 % have never attended a convention. The reasons for not attending included bad health, travel, no partner, don't dance much, can't dance as much, can't dance 2 days in a row. Joe commented that these answers reflect the age of our dancers. Another reason is busy with other activities. The primary reasons for not attending were cost and travel. The reasons for not liking the convention wide ranging, with significant discussion about format and callers. There were a lot of comments that the callers are amateurs. This is something that will have to be discussed. Some people did not like Johnstown because the dancing was in a different building than the hotel. The solo dancers don't like coming to a dance where they don't know anyone. The national callers were too fast. When asked what we could do to improve the conventions, some replies were- August is too busy, establish a consistent date and stick with it, choose a location in the center of the state and stick with it. There were several responses to dancing all day Friday. There was a comment to eliminate the bad callers, add contra dancing, add more round dancing, several said they liked the all-day casual dress. There was a question "What about a college with a dorm package like West Virginia. This prompted a discussion about using the colleges. Tony investigated and found that most of the colleges are now hosting activities, as well as students moving back into the dorms, and therefore are not available. When asked how people would like to be notified about the convention, there were about an equal number of votes for flyers, email, club announcements. Joe said he thought it was a useful questionnaire, But the obvious thing was the age and health of our dancers. Joe asked for questions. Ted asked, “What is the method for transmitting checks and data for membership?” Joe stated that the XL spreadsheet was not working and he would accept the data in any form that you give it to him. Ted asked to whom the checks should be sent. After some discussion, it was decided that the data and the checks would be sent to the membership chairperson.

Specialty License Plates:


Since the April 3, 2016 meeting, there has been no applications received for the PSRDF Specialty Plate Program.

This license plate program was approved as a way to promote square dancing and all federated {PSRDF} dancers are eligible to acquire this specialty plate as a replacement to the regular issued one by the PA, Bureau of Motor Vehicles.

To obtain this specialty license plate, Form MV-9404S0{1-15}, Application for Specialty Organization Registration Plate is to be used. This form can be obtained at the PSRDF Website, The instructions are outlined on this form. The fee for the plate is $25.00. Send the completed, signed form to me for approval.

Respectfully submitted, Mike Matsko

Bob asked if he was aware of any instances where PENDOT has come back and asked for the plate back, if the owner was not still dancing. Mike said he was not aware of any, but noted that if a person dropped out of the PSRDF for any reason, they were supposed to return the plate. That was one of the stipulations of getting the plate. There was a discussion as to which states had a square dance license plate. It was also noted that the PSRDF does not make anything on the plates. All money goes to PENDOT.



The following changes were made over the last 6 months:

Updated information for the 23rd State convention.

Updated PRSDF officer’s page.

                        Updates to Home page.

                        Did requested updates for the Central PA federation pages

Updated SVS & RDA pages as requested

                        Other corrections as requested.


On the issue of the web name. I think that we should NOT sell the Domain name. First, the users of the site would take a long time to get most of them to use any new site. Second to update all the links or listings that contain our site address would be a large problem. Also I have not heard again from the person that initially sent me the request. I think that this was a scam of some sort.

 Kenton Adams, PSRDF Web master

Caller Selection Chairman:

Bob Lawn reported that he had notified the 2 callers that we would not be having a convention in 2017, and that there were no signed contracts.

Ways and Means and Publicity:

 No Committee No Report

Tony urged that we go back to our federations and promote our organization. Ted asked what the ways and Means committee was. It was explained that it's purpose is to raise money for the Federation. The discussion touched on the belt buckles that we sold, and the patches. Clyde mentioned the the buckles were limited edition buckles. He also said that it has been at least 10 years since we sold them, and maybe it is time to sell them again.

State Outfits:

Tony will contact Bob & Janet Wilson and report back next meeting. The problems seem to be being able to colors and styles available.


                                               Report from Flooring Chairman

     Thank you to all who helped with the installation of the square dance flooring. We had four rooms to put flooring in.  We had approximately 12 people helping with installation and got three rooms done in 3 to 4 hrs. on Thursday. Friday morning we installed the fourth floor in 45 minutes. Everything went together well. When Saturday evening came, the last full day of dancing we took three of the floors up in 1- 1/2 hrs. On Sunday morning we took up the fourth floor. As I said it was a successful effort and thanks again to all who helped.                     

                                                                                                            Paul and Wendy Zajac

Tony commented that he thought we had an adequate amount of flooring now, and he didn't think we had to buy any more. Tony said that Paul was able to borrow a trailer from his work at no cost. He also said that maybe we should check into buying a used trailer in case we rent the flooring out. He added that we could probably rent a trailer if we rented it out. Bob Lawn asked if we had established a price that we would ask to rent it out, stating he had an inquiry from Tom Miller about wanting to rent it.

Tony said that we could not give him a flat rate, since it depends on where we have to haul it, and what we need to do to put it down. Diana suggested that we form a committee to come up with a cost, plus hauling and installation costs, so that if people wanted to rent it, we could give them a price. Mike stated that there was work done on this topic several years ago, and we should go back and get that information. Joe noted that if we had to pay to have that flooring installed and removed, it would be an awful lot of money. Bob looked up the report from last meeting and said that the going cost of renting the flooring was 48 cents a square foot, and if you needed to have them install it, there was a minimum labor charge of 4 hours at $19 per hour. This information came from the Star Spangled Festival. Bob, Mike, and Joe were charged with putting together a price. Tony said that Paul would probably be able to help direct with installation and removal of the flooring.

USDA Report

The USDA Annual Board of Directors Meeting was held on Wednesday 1:00 PM, June 22, 2016 at the 65th NSDC held in Des Moines, Iowa. Being that this was the 35th Anniversary of USDA, we celebrated this event by offering cake, coffee and tea during the meeting break to all attendees. During the USDA After Party, dancers were given lanyards as favors.

At the B.O.D.’s meeting the annual election of officers was conducted. Jerry and Donna Robey were elected for their second 1- year term as Presidents. Lisa Breault was elected for the second 1- year term as Vice President Eastern Region.

Approval of the new Social Media Committee as an addition to the Standing Rules, Standing Committees. The duty of this committee is to review and approve requests to join the USDA Facebook page in addition to sharing and adding content that will be of interest to our social media following and explore additional social opportunities.

A Youth Scholarship Award in the amount of $1000.00 was granted to Thomas Bucheit from Silverton, OR. A Centennial Award was given to 100 year old Frank Habersberger, Past President of USDA during a 2016 dance in Denver, CO.

The Annual USDA Operating Budget of $37,595.00 was approved. {85.6% of the budgeted income is derived from dancer insurance premiums.

Respectfully submitted, Mike & Pat Matsko

Tony said that if you know of anyone who 100 years old is and still dancing, that you should submit their name to receive the centennial award. If you are not sure how to do that, contact Tony. Ted asked what constitutes an affiliate. Mike said that PSRDF is an affiliate, therefore by belonging to the PSRDF, you would be an affiliate. Tony also pointed out that the USDA offers a $1000 scholarship to students who are square dancers. There is more information on the USDA web site.

Tony asked that if anyone was going to Cincinnati, that we need delegates to represent PSRDF. Most of the officers are involved with USDA, and therefore cannot be delegates. Ted asked how many delegates we were allowed to have. Mike said that we were allowed 4 delegate votes. That could be 4 individuals, or 4 couples. In the case of couples, each couple constitutes 1 vote. Ted went on to ask how many delegate votes were allowed in the PSRDF. Each association/federation is allowed 12 votes. Diana commented that you could bring as many people as you wanted to the meetings, but only 12 would have voting rights.  

Advisory Board:

Summary of the Convention Advisory Phone Call held September 17, 2016

In attendance were Mike Matsko, Larry and Margi Gorski, Tony and Diana Rock and Barbara MacDonald.  Clyde Miles was traveling and will add comments after reading the notes.

1.     No Convention in 2017.  It is also not feasible to do a one-day convention with the size of the state, lack of leadership and not sure how it would differ from federation dances.  Travel and cost would still be an issue for dancers.  Folks might enjoy traveling to Cincinnati for National if not attending state.

2.     Hold Convention dates for August 2018 at Camp Hill and Johnstown.  Look for future leadership and hope to regenerate interest. 

3.     Spend this year working to improve leadership, marketing strategies and generally working to change and promote the square dancing activity. Work with PSRDF and local federations to try new things to enhance this activity.

Respectfully submitted by Barbara MacDonald


Diana read the advisory board report. Tony made several comments about the report, the first concerning the one day festival. He said that no one has volunteered to chair it, and as well as the additional costs involved with hotel stays, both before and after the event , for people who had to travel a great distance to attend. Another comment concerned Bids for the convention. He said that we had bids from Johnstown and Camp Hill, both of which are favorable. He also said that Jane and Bruno are looking at a location in the Poconos, but so far they haven't been able to secure anything that is acceptable, but they are still working on it.

Old Business:

2017 Convention / One Day Festival:

Ted stated that he did not attend the Gettysburg festival because of the time involved in travel and he would need to stay overnight 2 nights in order enjoy a full day of dancing.  He stated that there were not many people from his area who went to Gettysburg for that reason. He said a lot more people came to the Pennsylvania Convention. Tony asked if Ted was familiar with the partial day festival that is held in the Delaware Valley area. Ted said that he has never attended that dance. Tony said that it was dancing for part of the day only, so that some people could drive out early, and only have to stay in a hotel 1 night. Ted said the reason Gettysburg worked is that there were enough people within an hour’s drive to make it work. Bob Engel said that he knew this was a touchy subject, but the reason that dance succeeds is because there are national callers. He made the point that if it were all local callers, that dance would fold, because people would not travel for the local callers. He said that when it came to callers, there were no home town heroes. Tony asked how that dance worked. Bob E gave a brief history of the festival, from the time that it was originally put on by the Cannonaders, at the Gettysburg College, to the present, where it is hosted by The Flirts and Skirts, and The Gad-A-Bouts, at the fire hall in Fairfield. Joe asked if there were decorations. Naomi and bob answered that there were minimal decorations. Naomi said that all the work was done by the clubs, and that there was a 50 / 50 and a Chinese auction. Diana noted that there were a lot of dancers that attended that dance, from central, Delaware valley, and Maryland.

Getting back to the subject of national callers, Tony said that the subject of national was not a point of contention, but it is among the callers. He said his goal, and that of the federation is not to lose thousands of dollars, as he finds it very difficult to pay national callers what they want for a minimal number of dancers. Bob E made the comment that from a dancer’s perspective, if he knew that a national caller was on the program for the weekend, he would be more inclined to attend, than if it were just local callers. Bill Gordon said he agreed, and that some of the callers at the convention should not have been there, they didn't have enough training, and he didn't know who was to blame for that. Someone said Callerlab, but Bill said that is not the case, and that Callerlab has training materials available. He stated that this material is available to clubs, also, and that they could get material to help their caller.  He said it takes a new caller a long time until he is competent enough that he can draw anybody. He said that some of them are not going to make it, and somebody should tell them that. Ed said that when he and Chris go to a dance, they look at the cost, and whether we will enjoy it. He said The Finger Lakes region was having a dance, with Jeff Bopst and Frank Hartzell. He said they didn't go because they were not going to go 60 miles and pay $20 for someone they did not want to dance to. Bob E repeated what Ken Bower said when Bob said that his home club dancers were very lucky. He said that there are no home town heroes, (he was just another caller to them). Bob said that dancers are not going to go any distance and pay $20 to dance to a caller that they can dance to any night of the week, but they will not hesitate to go some distance, and pay more money, if they get to dance to someone that they only get to dance to maybe once a year.

Tony admitted to not being up on the history of the federation and the convention. He said that the committee had come to the conclusion that we would have to radically change the structure of the convention in the way we handle callers. He said that in a discussion with a caller, the caller said that back in the day, people wanted to as many callers as they could. Now a days, people who have been dancing for a long time, like to dance to specific callers. He said that Joe suggested via email that perhaps we need a caller, or caller committee to help the convention. He said that you have to realize that there is a budget, and there is risk involved that we could lose tons of money. But that way, even if we have local callers, it might be more beneficial for the callers to police the callers, and be more specific, rather than letting everybody call. He said that it is a little difficult for him as a non-caller, to weed out the callers and tell some of them you are not of the caliber that we want. That doesn't set well. So if the callers had a selection group, and we said that we are only going to have 6 or 10 callers , and they had to apply and they were selected, and the callers that were not selected could answer to that committee and not the state. Bob E made the comment that if you were to look at the national convention, if you wanted to call there, you had to fill out a questionnaire, and they wanted to know your life history. He said that is not the case with the state convention. He said he doesn't think it takes a committee of callers to critique callers. He said that if you look at the questionnaire and the guy has only been 1 year, or even 5 years, what you to think are. While it is nice to give somebody a chance and help him get started, what you are really doing is putting it to the dancers. Tony mentioned that there are callers that have been calling for a long time, and they are getting older and making mistakes. Diana said that they are not familiar with them, and that is why they suggested the caller committee. Bill Gordon said that Germany used to have a system where callers had to audition before a board of callers, and you were awarded a badge, either black or white. If you had a white badge, you could call for local clubs, but you must have a black badge to call at a convention. Tony said something needs to be done regarding callers at the convention. He wondered why there was not a state wide callers association. He said that there are regional callers associations, but how much do they communicate? He feels we need to be more cohesive in the state. He told how Wisconsin callers association puts on the state convention.

Ed said that in Central, there are 5 new callers. He said that they come to the dances 1/2 hour early, and let them practice on the dancers, and that's where they should get their feet wet. But he said if he was going to pay good money, then he wants the good callers. Ted said that he attended all but 3 of the conventions, and in the beginning, the callers for the most part were good. But he said that it has deteriorated because when you have to get him to call you have lowered your standards quite a bit. He went on to say that there are people from his association who can call patter, but can't do a singing call. He said that we need to get back to good local callers.

Joe said that he and Helen go to the Gay convention, and that the callers are paid. But the young callers as they are coming up, are given 10 minutes at the top of every hour, and you know as a dancer that for the first trio, you will not get the national caller. They also have hours that are put aside for new callers. He said that it is well supported, and that most of the time you are getting to dance to the national callers. He also said that you pay well for that convention. Bill Gordon Said that a lot of dancers don't know how long it takes a caller to learn to call. He said that 5 years was pretty close to how long it takes a caller to learn, and usually it is a lot longer than that. Bob E said that one reason for the bad calling is that new callers are being pushed to learn to sight call, when they should be learning, at least in the beginning, a different method of calling, and not have to rely on the dancers.

Ed made the comment that several of the clubs hire national callers, and sometimes they make money, and sometimes they lose money, but the main thing is that it was an enjoyable dance. Tony said that $300 is one thing, but $800 or$1000 is a little harder to swallow. There was a comment about new callers coming out of a caller’s college and calling things that you couldn't do. It was stated that the callers teaching the course did not correct him. Jerry Goshorn stated that there were 3 separate callers at the state convention that were calling calls that could not be done from that formation. He stated that they needed to refresh themselves of the definitions

            The question came up that the advisory board recommended against having a 1 day convention in 2017, and did we need to vote on it. Tony asked for a motion. Clyde made a motion that we do not have a one day convention in 2017. The motion was seconded. Motion carried

Joining with the West Virginia Convention:

There was discussion as to whether we should entertain the idea of joining with West Virginia for their convention. Bob E made a motion that we do not join with any other federation for their convention. The motion was seconded by Ed and carried, with one opposed. Joe said that since we are not having our own convention, we should go all out and promote neighboring conventions. There was unanimous agreement on this point. Tony commented that this was really a good year for us to not have a convention, as so many will be spending their money going to the convention in Cincinnati.

Tony took this opportunity to ask that we all go back to our respective federations, and try to see if we can find someone to chair the 2018 convention, preferably someone with experience with past conventions, or committees.

Tony also said that he wanted to resolve this caller issue, and that there were good points made, and he agreed that there needed to be some changes made, whether that be make changes on the number and proficiency level the area callers, and / or national callers, he thinks we need to work with the callers. He would like the callers to talk to their peers and see if the callers could help get something resolved that way. Diana asked if the callers present at the meeting would go back to their associations and try to come up with a plan. Bob E said that we were in agreement that the level of expertise needed to be brought up. Diana asked if we would be willing to be in charge of that. Bob replied probably not. She asked why not, since we (callers) know best. Clyde said that that was a very tough thing. Tony said that that was the problems we have. Bob said, actually it is not. They are not your peers. Tony said this is where he had a concern. Because a lot of people and particularly some of the callers in Pennsylvania have been very verbal about problems with the state convention, however it's easy to get on Facebook and the computer and be critical. He said it is very difficult to coordinate something and put a lot of work into it. If people don't want to help, but all they want to do is complain, how are we supposed to do anything? Bob responded by asking if we were having callers who took exception to the fact that there was a paid caller. The answer was yes. Bob also asked if those people were boycotting the convention because of that. The answer was yes, some of them. Bob expressed his opinion that they do not have the interests of the dancers or the federation or the activity at heart. If they cared about the dancers, they would be here today at this meeting. If they cared about the dancers, they wouldn't be posting garbage on Facebook. If they cared about the activity, they would be supporting it and not tearing it apart. Diana acknowledged that there were two separate issues here and we were just trying to resolve them.

Clyde acknowledged that he would not feel comfortable telling a new caller that he just didn't have it. He said that Tom Miller would stay after the dance and critique the new callers. He said that of all the callers, only one stuck with it. Clyde said he could see that that would be a problem for callers. Bob mentioned that with the caller questionnaire, there was no one to blame if a caller didn't get selected. Clyde said he remembered when Pennsylvania sent out the questionnaire. It was noted that we no longer sent out questionnaires, but just an invitation to call.

Ted said that 2 callers from his federation filled out the forms and were accepted to call. Bob responded that yes, they got to call, but when? Ten o'clock in the morning?  Bob also said that he was in the mainstream hall on 2 separate occasions, and there were no dancers. He wondered why we even had a mainstream hall.

2018 PSRDF Convention:

Ed brought up the 2018 convention and remarked that school is back in session and maybe should consider moving the convention to a different date. Tony said that that is something we should look into. Diana asked if the callers would be willing to create this questionnaire. Bill Gordon commented that perhaps we should get together dancers and have the callers audition for them, and let the dancers decide. Tony said that the problem with that was the timing involved and the logistics. Tony would like to have a meeting with the callers. He could set up a conference call with the callers and the executive committee and maybe the advisory board, to see if we could come up with something to improve this convention. Diana said that she would put out a sheet for interested parties to list their contact information.

Tony reported that while we have favorable bids from both Johnstown and Camp Hill, he told them that if they get an opportunity to rent their facilities, they should do it.



Audit Report:

Clyde reported that he audited the treasurer’s books on August 13, 2016 for the period from May1 2015 to March 31, 2016 and found the books to be in order.

**Due to time constraints, some items of new business that were on the agenda will be skipped.

Election of Officers:

Tony stated that the nominating committee consists of the Presidents of the local federations, the current chairman of the state federation, and the past President of the association. So far, the nominees are:

President, Bob Lawn and Martha Thompson

Treasurer, Diana Hershberger.


There are no other nominees at this time. We are still seeking nominations for Secretary and First and Second Vice President. He asked that we go back to our federations and try to interest someone in running. The term of office is from May 1 to April 30. Tony said that if anyone is interested and cannot make the meeting that he would need a biography and a letter of intent.

Callerlab 50 Call Initiative:

Mike reported that he had seen the Callerlab 50 call initiative presentation. He feels that we have a number of clubs within the state federation that are in real trouble and have not been able to get new dancers in years. He said that we are aging to the point that if these clubs do nothing about being actively involved in pursuing a program to get new dancers, they will be out of business in a few years. He thinks that we as a federation should consider encouraging some of these approaches that he understands are being used, not only the Callerlab version, but others that are being used in the country. He says they are more successful in bringing in more new dancers, and retaining more new dancers, than the traditional program that we have all been using. He says that 75% of the dancers that come under the traditional program will leave. He said that he thinks that is a true representation, and when those dancers leave, they influence others in a negative way, making it harder for us to recruit new dancers. He said that we can't take a position that we can't get new dancers to try a program. He said that other callers who are using some of these programs are getting them in, so there is a way He believes that as a federation, we should be asking what we should do to help those clubs that would like to try one of those programs. He thinks we need to find a way to educate them and get some takers. He thinks it will cost money to implement a program. He feels we have to take leadership and encourage clubs to try something different. There are a number of programs that we can explain to them, if we had some clubs that want to try it, and some callers that want to get involved with it. He said that the callers alone could not do it. Bob E asked to play devil’s advocate. He said that in the early years, square dancing was fragmented, and each caller had his own set of calls, making it difficult for dancers to travel and expect to dance, without having to be taught a new set of calls. Callerlab came along and standardized the calls that we use, and this is why we can travel all over the world and square dance. He wondered if this 50 call imitative was not leading us backward. Ted said that callers in his area are using a teaching order that was advocated by Tim Marriner. Popular calls are taught in order to get the dancers dancing quickly. Then at a later time, they are taught the rest of the calls. He said they are having success with the program. This is different than the 50 call initiative in that they are eventually taught all the calls. He also that one of the clubs was having great success because of extensive marketing. Bill Gordon agreed with Ted, and said that this type of program will only work if the clubs initiate it because there are very few caller run clubs in our area. It was mentioned that we need more mainstream clubs. Tony asked if we wanted to make some kind of resolution, or table this discussion and see if the PSRDF would want to do something support this program. Bill G said that this was not something that could be forced on the clubs. It has to be their decision. Bob E said that a big problem is that there are not enough callers. He said that he teaches 2 nights a week, calls for 2 clubs, and is gone most weekends. This leaves very little time for another club or class. He believes most callers are in the same situation. Ted presented a proposal that he feels will benefit square dancing. He said one of the things we need to do is market. He said that lawn signs were a big help. He suggested that the PSRDF consider buying signs for the clubs another part of the signs, is having a contact number, and that whoever mans the phone have all the information available for all the clubs in the area. He also suggested listing the web address on the sign. There was no action taken on his proposal. Joe told us about Pennsylvania's yellow dot program. Basically, you put the enclosed yellow dot on your car window. This alerts medical personnel to look in the glove box for pertinent medical information, as well as a photo of yourself, and emergency contact information. These are available free from PennDot from their website.

A motion was made to adjourned and seconded. Meeting adjourned at 4:59 P.M.

The next meeting will be Sunday, April 2, at 1 P.M. location TBA

Executive Committee meeting at 11:00 A.M




                                                                                                                                Respectfully submitted

                                                                                                Bob Engel for

                                                                                                Diana Hershberger