Contra dance set at Port Angeles Senior Center on Wednesday

By Diane Urbani de la Paz
Peninsula Daily News

PORT ANGELES — A special community contra dance is coming up Wednesday evening, thanks to visitors from New England: Perpetual e-Motion, a fiddle-guitar duo from Maine, and George Marshall, a nationally known dance caller.

Unlike the first-Saturday monthly contra dances, this one won’t be at the Black Diamond Community Hall.

One of the organizers of those events, Elizabeth Athair, has picked another venue for what is a long-hoped-for gathering.

The dance, open to all ages, will come to the Port Angeles Senior & Community Center, 328 E. Seventh St., with admission at $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and teenagers and $5 for children.

Athair knows Marshall from many years ago, when she lived and danced in Rochester, N.Y., and he was one of her favorite callers.

“Each year, I’ve asked when he would be out here” on the West Coast, she said.

It looked like he could come in 2011, but she couldn’t find the right venue and then Marshall found a gig elsewhere.

Athair didn’t give up, though.

“Last spring, we started the conversation again, and he said his only time available would be Nov. 14. I thought since winter would be near, it might be a great pep-up to keep the winter blues away for the community,” she recalled.

“To make it easier for more folk to come, I thought it might be nice to have it in town, and the Senior Center seemed central.”

Perpetual e-Motion’s Ed Howe and John Coté have played many a time with Marshall.

The duo is “perched at the convergence of traditional and electronic dance music,” and in hot pursuit of an “enormous sound full of momentum and groove,” according to their website,

Caller Marshall, meantime, sums up his mission as “to share the joy of dance!”

To that end, Wednesday’s event will start with a beginners’ dance workshop at 6:30 p.m.; then the band will play and Marshall will call till 9:30 p.m.

To learn more about this and other contra dance gatherings in Port Angeles, phone 360-477-7222.

Features Editor Diane Urbani de la Paz can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5062, or at

Last modified: November 12. 2012 5:37PM
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