History of Jefferson County Squares
The Clipper "Jefferson County
Squares" set sail in March of 1983 with a full crew of 41 members, 32 of whom
had just graduated on the 6th of March. They had started square dance lessons in
the Twin City Motel, Crystal City, Missouri last September with their teacher,
Floyd and Marilyn Bohnert. Our first Captain (President) Lloyd & Carol Bates
took the helm as we sailed off to join the St. Louis League of Clubs on March
21. We stopped on shore long enough have our first official Club dance April 17,
at Gateway Hall where we had recently moved, giving us more room. It was an old
building with floors carpeted and a small area of hardwood that slanted toward
We sailed on and quickly
started to Raid & Retrieve. The first Club outfit was a navy and white check
dress, white lace with Red or white petticoat for gals and navy pants, checked
shirt for men.
In September a new dancer
class was started, with 27 new members to join the crew in March of 1984. We
were well on our way to higher seas.
We sailed on to the
Conservation Club where we enjoyed large crowds at the monthly dances. In June,
1985 we had an Appreciation Dance for our caller, This is your Life, inviting
family, friends and anyone who had been involved with Floyd's learning to call,
and gave him a western suit. We celebrated our 1st "We Done It" this year.
Aug. 31,1986 we launched our
1st Amateur Caller Dance with 5 prospective callers participating. 1987 sailed
by with lots of exhibitions and visiting other Clubs.
In 1988 another Amateur Caller
Dance was with 8 new Callers showing their talents. Our caller, Floyd moved away
and Harold Rowden came aboard to carry on the duties of calling and teaching.
Dianne & Jerry Broadwater
started teaching round dance. We docked long enough to have a Winter Holiday
special weekend at the Holiday Inn, Festus, Missorui. J. R. Sparks & Harold as
Caller and Jerry & Diane Broadwater as round dance cuers. There were 110
on board for that dance.
By this time we had acquired a
crew of 110, Two more Winter Holiday weekends were held, the last one at the
Festus Armory. In 1991 we also hosted the Belleville Jamboree, theme was "Let's
Jul 31, 1992, 42 Jefferson
County Squares sailed off to surprise our caller Rowden at a dance in Humbolt,
June 1993 came a huge project
as we were to manage the Hospitality Committee for the National Square Dance
Convention Held in St. Louis. Aii crew members had a special job to do.
In June of 1994 our caller,
Harold Rowden decided to jump ship. He retired. Round dance lessons started with
Judy & Hank Scherrer teaching.
In June 1995 found our Club
changing the R-7 school cafeteria, October 29 we held another Amateur Caller
Dance 13 new callers and cuers to grace our deck, Judy & Hank Scherrer had taken
over most of the round teaching by now. 1996 in March more changes, John Stuart
was voted in as Club Caller and Judy Scherrer as Cuer. 1st Whole Hog Roast was
held August 10 that year. Our members did the roasting and all the fixins. Mark
Turner and John Stuart did all the calling, Judy & Hank the Rounds. These were
held for the next 9 years, with different themes and lots of decorations and
dancing friends coming back each year. What Fun!
Square dancing was dropping
off, as it was happening over the whole country. So if anyone showed interest in
dancing, John, our caller, would start lessons for them. Combining lessons with
our workshops worked well.
By 2000 we were ready to
change Ports again, this time until the present our home port is at Our Lady's
School and Church, Festus for our 3rd Sunday dances and at the American Legion
Hall for all workshops every Tuesday. In August of 2000 we hosted a "This is
Your Life" Dance in honor of our caller John Stuart. Inviting all family,
friends and anyone who had been involved in his calling life.
2001 brought us to a Mystery
Trip in Clinton, Illinois for an all Gospel dance. Won a "Toot Your Horn" badge
from Missouri Federation in 2002. Sailed off on another Mystery Trip to a
Passion Play in Bloomington, Illinois in 2003.
We have had quilt raffles,
entertained guest at Shepard of the Hills, Branson. Danced between acts of a
play at Jefferson College, did Relay for Life, cooked at McDonald House and had
yard sales. Even danced at the Muny Opera in St. Louis. In 2004 a Cook Book was
printed with recipes from members, family and friends. 2008 brought us into the
lime light with the production of the "Hee Haw" show presented at our regular
dance in November with all characters of the original TV show performed by the
members of Jefferson County Squares. It was successful and very enjoyable,
tempting us to do it the next year.
Square dancing for us has
increased in the past 2 years. We are happy to announce that we just graduated
26 new dancers.
We still have John and Judy at
the helm, may not have profited so much money wise, but the enjoyment and
fellowship we gained from knowing all the Special People in the Square Dance
World is an award that cannot be matched. To quote one of our Charter Members.
"SQUARE DANCING Is FRIENDSHIP SET To MUSIC".
History Provided By Mrs.