Ballroom Joe's Dance Links
Updated November, 2009.
The following links are all based on places/things/sites I've had a chance to check out and/or frequent,
so they are listed here by my personal recommendation, as opposed to just links I've copied from other pages. Enjoy...
Places to Dance Dance Networking Dance Video Downloads Buy Dance supplies Dance Article Links
Places to dance:
***For Country and Line Dancing***
Michael's Cafe in Bensalem has a very popular country line dancing every Thursday night.
I like them because there is no cover, and they also have a second, separate dance floor where you can do other stuff
like Swing, Rumba and Cha Cha, to the same rythyms as music for the line dances. They also have a full bar and food menu.
***For Salsa and other Latin Dancing***
There's Cuba Libre, and Brasils, (and a few other places around the city which I don't really know anything else about since I've still have not been there yet.
If its the 2nd or 4th Friday, check out La Luna in Bensalem.
They've got a great dance floor/studio and ambiance, and are known for their popular Salsa nights.
If it's the first or third Saturday, you can go to the Media Inn for Julie Berger's Salsa in the Suburbs. You'll get anywhere from 75-200 people at these parties and the dancing goes until 1am. There is a great mix of all levels of dancers there, and Julie gives an introductory lesson at 9:00. I frequently help out there, and I have a policy of never refusing a dance for anyone who asks.
They have a cash bar, light refreshments, and plenty of seating, along with a nightclub ambiance, right in the heart of everybody's home town; Media.
the info is at Salsainthesuburbs.com
I'm reluctant to tell you about this one, because I think it's a best kept secret, and I'm tempted to keep it all to myself. But every 1st Sunday of the Month, the Midnight Sun, a full Swing Ensemble plays all afternoon at Havana's in New Hope. A bunch of us recently checked it out. These guys were right up there with the City Rhythm and the Walt Wagner bands. There was no cover, and the food, drink and ambiance was top notch! And even though we took over the dance area, they were more than welcoming and loved playing for us.
There's the Philly Swing Dance society's dance every 2nd Saturday throughout the year.
I've always enjoyed their dances. There are all levels of dancers an intro lesson before every dance, and a very inviting atmosphere.
If you see me volunteering at the gate, or refreshments, please say hi!
For the 3rd Saturday, check out the University Arts League at Upenn.
Lots of great swingers there, and it's not just college kids either.
***For Ballroom and Ballroom related:***
First of all, every First Friday of the month, there are my First Friday parties;
unlike any other in terms of musicality, user-friendly format, and quality of door prizes.
Details on the link.
Second on the list would be every Wednesday night, you can practice in Media at Ballroom By Request..
Three hours of personalized music and my own assistance all night long. Details on the link.
Every Thursday in downtown Media there is Argentine Tango. in a great new space.
Group lesson and open dancing late into the evening. www.sanghaspace.com
And once a month on the 2nd Saturday, is the Monthly TangoHop. I love it because it always goes nice and late (at least until 1:30 am)
I think this is one of the best places to not only try partner dancing for the first time,
but also where you can feel comfortable just watching and getting exposed to this exotic dance.
All the details on the frequently updated website: www.tangohop.com
And Every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night, there's the Peppermint Club, at Plymouth Meeting Mall.
They play a mix of all the dances (waltz, viennese waltz tango, argentine tango, foxtrot, quickstep, west coast swing,
east coast swing, cha cha, salsa, merengue, rumba, bolero, country 2-step, nightclub 2-step, I think I got 'em all)
Twelve dollars for the lesson and dancing, and food (or six dollars if you get there after the Mall closes and come in through the back door: pay the DJ.)
And then there's the Atrium in Pennsauken
Though I've only been there a few times, I've always had a really good time and was quite impressed by not only the ambiance,
the dance floor, the variety of dancing, the hospitality of the staff and level of dancers, and the website for the Atrium in Pennsauken:
And on the last Sunday afternoon of each month, there is a "Mostly Waltz" Dance right in Broomall.
Though it's mostly waltz, they'll mix in other traveling dances like country 2-steps, Viennese Waltzes, Polkas, Foxtrots, and even a few Tangos.
They also do some tradional folk dances: the Schottishe, Hambo and Zwefocher (sp?)
Every Friday, the Newly Constructed Stardust Ballroom is open to the public. This huge dance floor attracts dancers from New Jersey,
Pennsylvania and Delaware. If you frequently feel like you keep running out of space with your Waltz, Tango, Foxtrot and Quickstep, you won't have that problem here!
They also play plenty of Cha Chas, Hustles, Rumbas and West Coast Swings. Plenty of water and tables provided, but make sure to BYO Carbs!
***And For Really Good Ice Cream***
I also want to mention a great place to go for desert before Midnight, right there in walking distance in Olde City.
The best Ice Cream parlor in the city in my opinion (and I'm not just saying that 'cause my friend Eric runs it). It truly is unique: www.franklinfountain.com
Dance Networking sites:
Searching for a partner? There is only one site I know of dedicated to helping individuals find dance partners of all levels of comitment.
You can literally search the entire world for age, height, experience, comittment level, relationship status, etc. Dancepartner.com
If anyone is traveling to Vancouver for a month or so, a contact of mine from danceway.com has a room for rent: http://www.danceway.com/room/
My local internet provider has set up these two forums for all things Dance Related in the Delaware Valley:
PhiladelphiaDANCE.org & PhiladelphiaDanceDirectory. Similar, but not exactly the same. Check them out.
more links on the way...
Ballroom Dance Videos you can download
There are lots of performers out there who don't like their dancing
videotaped or downloaded for fear that people will steal their moves.
Luckily, there are some excellent dancers out there who do not feel this way.
These are links of cool videos I've seen and respect, each for a different reason.
Canadian Champions Vadim and Nadiya demostrate the Samba! http://www.onlinevadim.com/links/videos.html
An amazing Lindy Swing routine. The only word that comes to mind is "surreal" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FvHhaxgSs1U
An excellent Demo of Cha Cha with great form and style www.youtube.com/watch?v=1I6R4CF5prc
Don't end up like either of these guys:
more on the way...
SHOES: This is a great store in Manhattan where I bought my first two pairs of dance shoes two years ago.
At the time, they didn't even have a website. They've evolved since then. But I still recommend driving up on a Sunday
and personally choosing from their selection. I'm still wearing my first pair. They're that durable!
SWING DANCE ACCESSORIES,
Including how-to videos, skirts for women, ties and sunglasses for men, videos, and a great breakdown of the different types of dance shoes.
I'm buying my very first pair of dance sneakers from here.
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