By Margaret James – Lloydminster, Alta.
I am the seventh of a family of eight children. There were six boys, some who liked to dance. In our little town of Paradise Valley, Alta.
Knor’s built a new garage/service station. It had a nice showroom for cars and tractors, and a great spot for a dance. If memory serves me right, someone held an anniversary dance there.
It was there that one of my brothers decided I should (at about the age of eight) learn to dance. I did this by standing on his toes. Needless to say, I didn’t stay on his feet very long before I was in the land of dance.
Another very early remembrance of dancing was an old-time barn dance. One of our neighbours built a new barn with a nice loft, and they held a dance in the loft.
I found this scary because we had to climb a ladder outside to get into the loft, but everyone made it up safely and we had a great time.
During my school years, we had many school dances in town and outlying school districts. Of course, those of us who loved to dance made many trips to these dances. Two of my older brothers would take me along.
There wasn’t any antifreeze for vehicles then, so when the radiators froze up we had to hope we were near a farm where we could get hot water to thaw them out and continue on to the dance.
I remember one summer evening, nine of us got into a big old Monarch car and drove from Paradise Valley to a dance in Marshall, Sask.
I was very happy to be the smallest person there so I didn’t have to hold anyone on my knee going home. During my married years we attended many dine and dance.
Then, in the fall of 1996, I moved to Lloydminster, Alta. It was there that I took up pattern dancing, old-time dancing, and polka fests.
The first three-day polka fest I attended was in Provost. I thought I had died and gone to heaven, they are such fun. You meet people from all over the place and many new friendships are formed.
Now music jams have added a new dimension. You can listen to a lot of local talent and dance the night or day away!