The Annual Square Dance Tradition at the Westport Macomber School Dates Back Decades
Tell me you're from Westport, without telling me you're from Westport.
For decades, the Westport Macomber School has taught its kindergarteners the art of square dancing all leading up to its annual hoedown in the gymnasium. I had the honor of being this year's DJ and that's when it hit me- it's been 30 days since I was a kindergartner at that very same schoolning the exact same square dance.
I attended the entire Westport school system and just about forgot about this tradition until I witnessed it for myself. It was pure joy and serotonin seeing the kindergarteners have a fun time and absolutely nail the dance. Moat importantly, it was refreshing to see them dancing with their friends and just being a kid rather than being glued to electronics.
Each students invited one parent or guardian to show off the hard work they put into their square dance routine. Little did they know there was a surprise for them as well as the staff invited them to join in with the kids. It wasn't an easy task, but the kindergarteners saved the show and demonstrated how a hoedown is executed.
"When I started teaching Kindergarten in the year 2000, I worked with three teachers ( Mrs Gonsalves, Ms Raczka and Mrs Defusco)," Michelle Fortin Thomas said, "They told me how they used to square dance with the kids. We still keep in touch with them and they were so excited to find out we resurrected the square dance and brought it to a new level with the hoedown and including the parents."
Nothing but smiles as the kids danced the night away to popular country music and line dances. They are now part of a milti-generational tradition that will either stick with them or fade away, because let's be honest, at 35 I'm lucky to remember the Cha Cha Slide, nevermind how to square dance.
Honestly, I believe it's important and educational for schools to add square dancing to lesson plans. It allows the kids to absorb a culture that only a few (in this neckof the woods) are familiar with. As the night came to an end, the children let out one last big "yee-haw" before retiring to their homes.
Westport pride at it's finest.