This page tries to keep track of all contra dances, traditional square dances (but not Modern Western Square Dances), traditional waltz sessions and Scandinavian dances in Alaska including dance camps and weekends along with other events in Alaska which include contra dancing and these other forms. Because most of the information is gathered from web sites and the listings are not updated as frequently as the web sites, dancers should visit the web sites for up-to-date information. If you are aware of any dances, dance series or other events that should be included on this list, please e-mail me.
As of September 3, 2020, the dance listings should be fairly up to date including whether dances are canceled although I am behind in keeping up to date with festivals, weekends, etc.. Some dances series have not posted new information about dance cancellations since April or even March but if a dance series has not indicated that a dance is canceled, I strongly recommend that you contact the dance organizers to confirm that the dance is happening. For those series that have posted that dances are canceled for the "foreseeable future" or the equivalent, I've put a cancelation notice for dances up to and including October 31, 2020. In mid-October, I'll follow up for the September dates. You'll notice that, in many cases, information about evening/afternoon dances is getting "thin". Many dance groups post dates a few months ahead and dances have been canceled for much of the last three months. Organizations are not posting new dates until they confirm that they will start holding dances so you may not see the usual dates for dance series because they have not been posted, even with cancelations. Also note that some dance weekends, etc. are already postponing events from winter/spring of 2021 to similar dates in 2022.
Conversations and cancelations are happening every day in connection with dances as part of regular series and also weekends, festivals, etc. I'll try to keep current as much as possible, but please check the individual web sites, Facebook groups/pages, e-mail lists, etc. for the most up-to-date information about a dance or other event that you may want to attend.
Anchorage: The Dancing Bears sponsor dances at various locations in Anchorage. Cost is $10 for non-members, $8 for members. Dances go from 7:30pm to 10:30pm. Call the Bear Phone - 566-BEAR or check the web site for dance information and updates. Web site: http://www.thedancingbears.org/.
Anchorage - Folk Festival: Mostly music festival held over two weekends and the week between in late January. Dances on some nights. Web site: http://www.anchoragefolkfestival.org/.
Anchorage - Winter Wonderland: Special dance held in December. Cost: $25. Call the Bear Phone - 566-BEAR or check the web site for dance information and updates. Web site: http://www.thedancingbears.org/.
Anchorage - New Year's Eve: Special dance held on New Year's Eve. Location: Square and Round Dance Center is on Government Hill; 432 East Harvard. Call the Bear Phone - 566-BEAR or check the web site for dance information and updates. Web site: http://www.thedancingbears.org/.
Anchorage - Mostly Waltz: Paul Arneson presents his mostly waltz night on the 1st Saturday of each moth at the Fred Astaire Dance Studios, 1300 East 68th Street, Suite 202 (upstairs), from 8pm to 11pm, for $5. Music for waltzing plus swing, cha cha, night club 2, and free yummy stuff to eat. Web site: http://www.akswing.com/.
Anchorage - Heifer International Benefit: Barn Dance at Wendler Junior High School. This is a family event! Contra dancing and a silent auction to raise funds for Heifer International! Entrance is by donation. Event is from 7pm to 11pm. Web site: https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=119325971476026.
Anchorage - Alaska City Folk Arts Camp: Alaska Folk Arts Camp is a 5-day folk music & folk arts summer camp located in the heart of Anchorage, Alaska. Campers (ages 8-17) are immersed in music-making, dance & fun that we hope will spark a creative flame which will burn year around! Some public events during the week including a contra dance. Web site: http://www.alaskafolkarts.com.
Anchorage - Alaska City Folk Arts Music Camp - Evening Dance: Public event as part of the Folk Arts Music Camp. Dance is at the Square and Round Dance Center on Government Hill at 7pm. Admission is $5 (play in the band and get in free). Web site: http://www.alaskafolkarts.com.
Anchorage - Contra and Square Classes: On Tuesdays for five weeks from 7pm to 8:30pm at Square and Round Dance Center, 432 E. Harvard. $8 per person per class. Student rate $5 per person per class. Experienced dancers welcome to come help: please pay $2 head fee to S & R. Bring clean shoes to wear on dance floor and your own water bottle. No experience necessary. No partner necessary, but consider bringing a friend -- it's more fun! Come to any or all of the classes. What to expect: it will be similar to a regular dance, but with more thorough walk-throughs and explanations (and no live music). After a dance, we will discuss what needs to be smoothed out, answer questions, practice moves if needed, etc. We may dance the same dance again. Then we move on to another dance, building on what was learned in the first dance. If you have wondered exactly how to do a balance and swing, a hey for 4 (or 6 or 8!), what is a Rory O'More, how to twirl your partner, how to hear the phrase of the music -- this class should clear up at least SOME of those mysteries! Call 245-1634 for more info. Web site: http://www.thedancingbears.org/.
Anchorage - Waltz - Powers Weekend: Cross-step waltz weekend with Waltz Workshop. Sponsored by The Dancing Bears at The Square and Round Dance Center. 432 E. Harvard Ave., Anchorage, AK. Register in advance. Web site: http://www.thedancingbears.com/.
Anchorage - Squares - Tent City Bluegrass Festival: One-day festival with some square dancing at Anchorage Community Works, 349 E Ship Creek Ave, Anchorage, Alaska 99501. Time: 2pm-10pm. $20 adv / $25 door Tickets available www.taprootalaska.com - All Ages, Food Trucks, Beer Garden (+21), Outdoors! Square Dancing! Web site: https://www.facebook.com/events/900891886624316/.
Anchorage - Taproot: Barn dance at the Taproot, 3300 Spenard Road, Anchorage, AK. Doors open at 8pm, show at 9pm. Age: 21+. Web site: https://taprootalaska.com.
Anchorage - Squares - Fall Time Boogie: An evening of old time ballads, high energy contra dance music, a nationally renown dance caller and ruckus electric honky tonk from a diverse line-up of some the best roots musicians in the state at the Fall Time Boogie at 49th State Brewing Co, 717 W 3rd Ave, Anchorage, Alaska 99501. 8pm to 1am. $20. Web site: https://www.49statebrewing.com/.
Anchorage - Ravens Roost: Ravens Roost, a Cohousing development in Anchorage, is celebrating their grand opening with refreshments and celebration at 5:30 and a Contradance at 7:00pm and going to 8:30pm. The neighborhood is just north of the intersection of Abbott Road and Little Brook Street. The parking lot is on the right as you enter the property. Web site: http://www.abbottcoho.org/.
Anchorage - Squares - Planned Parenthood: Square dance included in the Pickers for Planned Parenthood and The ACLU event at 49th State Brewing Co Anchorage, 717 W 3rd Ave, Anchorage, Alaska 99501 from 7:30pm to 12:30am. All Tickets sales after cost to be evenly distributed to both Planned Parenthood and The A.C.L.U. Web site: https://www.facebook.com/events/326522321084004/.
Anchorage - Waltz - Cross-Step Class For those of you who want to learn Cross-Step Waltz or want to refresh your memory on what you once learned, an opportunity is coming your way. Classes at ChangePoint Church, 6689 Changepoint Dr, Anchorage, AK 99518. It will be a progressive class so if you are new to the dance, please DON'T miss the first class. If you do, you likely will feel behind the rest of the way. New material will be added each week with only a brief review of what was taught the previous week. The classes start at 7:45 and end at 8:45. Cost is $5.00 per lesson or $20. for the series. A free dance will follow the class with some waltzes for you to practice and other tunes for a variety of dancing. Web site: None.
Anchorage - Folks for Local Food: Dance hosted by the Alaska Food Policy Council at the 49th State Brewing Co, 717 W 3rd Ave, Anchorage, Alaska 99501 from 9 PM - 12:55 AM. Kick off the holiday season right by joining us for a night of music, merriment, dancing, and good will. We have joined up with Food Bank of Alaska and The Alaska Food Policy Council to raise awareness about food security and sustainable food production, along with collecting actual food for Alaskan families in need. Please bring any non-perishable food donation to the event and receive a $5 discount toward your entrance fee. Part of our proceeds will also go directly to the Alaska Food Policy Council. Web site: https://www.facebook.com/events/1946559228932501/.
Anchorage - ChangePoint Alaska: Free introduction to contra dancing from 7:45pm to 10:00pm. No experience (it's perfect for beginners!) or partner is necessary. Location: ChangePoint Alaska, 6689 ChangePoint Drive, Anchorage, AK 99518 Web site: https://www.facebook.com/events/252570095688312/.
Chugiak: Circle, Scatter, Contra and Square Dancing! Join others for fun Friday evenings of shared dinner and dancing! No dancing experience necessary, instruction will be provided. Bring a joyful heart and a teachable feet:-) Bring a large dish of your favorite potluck food for a shared meal from 6-6:45pm. Cost: 25 and up - $9/person; 18-25 - $5/person; Under 17 - Free; Caller: Maria D'Agostino; Questions? 907-854-5170 Web site: https://www.ergrace.org/.
Denali National Forest - Camp Denali Dance Camp: Dance camp including wilderness hikes in the National Forest (hikes during the day; dances in the evening). Register in advance. Web site: http://campdenali.com.
Denali National Park - Tonglen Lake: Dance at Tonglen Lake Lodge from 8pm to 11pm. $10 per person. Dance special - cabins 1/2 price (includes breakfast). Web site: http://TonglenLake.com.
Ester - Square Dance: Dances at Hartung Hall, Ester, Alaska at 8:00pm. Web site: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Lost-Dog-String-Band/532445146809439.
Fairbanks: The Contra Borealis Dancers sponsor dances at Pioneer Park, 2300 Airport Way on the 1st Friday and 3rd Saturday of the month. 7:45pm - brief lesson. Dancing from 8pm to 10:45pm. Admission: Adult members $8, Adult non-members: $10, Student members: $5, Student non-members: $7, Dancers under 13 years old: no charge. Web site: http://contraborealis.org/.
Fairbanks - University Equestrian Network: Dance starts at 8pm. $5 admission. The University Equestrian Network, a UAF campus/community club, is having a contradance on campus at the Hess Recreation Center in Moore Hall on campus. We'll also have a de...ssert (and baked goods) auction. We are raising funds for our sustainable horse and small livestock keeping project, and plan to host Alayne Bickel of Horses for Clean Water to give a workshop in April on sustainable, green horse property management. She will also do a workshop for dog mushers if there's interest. Parking is available in front of and behind Moore Hall (on the road to the museum) and is free without a decal after 5pm. If you have questions, contact me at 458-0118 or at firstname.lastname@example.org - Web site: None.
Fairbanks - Northern Lights Council of Dancers: Dance at the Pioneer Park Dancehall- free dinner at 7, contradance from 7:30-8pm. Sponsored by the Northern Lights Council of Dancers for their Annual Membership Meeting. Web site: http://www.dancealaska.org/.
Fairbanks - Squares: There will be a free family square dance at Community Covenant Church (2136 McCullam Avenue) from 3:00-5:00pm. All are welcome! For more info please contact Marlen and Tammy Pruett at 907-322-0670 or 907-590-5674. Web site: None.
Fairbanks - Waltz - Lessons: Contadancers are specially invited to a summer dance workshop being offered by the Ballroom Dance Club. Learn to waltz and swing. Classes will be from 6 to 9:30 pm. Cost is $15 per class. Call for more information: 456-3331 or Web site: http://www.ballroomfairbanks.org.
Fairbanks - Tanana Valley State Fair: Dance is from 6pm to 9pm on the fairgrounds, located in the large barn. Entry to the dance is free, besides the regular price to enter the fair. Web site: http://www.tananavalleyfair.org/.
Fairbanks - Nor'easter Weekend: Weekend with dances, music and dance workshops and a concert. Web site: http://contraborealis.latitude65.org/.
Fairbanks - Callers Workshop: The Contra Borealis Dancers sponsor a callers' workshop from 1pm to 5pm (time and place tentative). All interested in learning about calling are welcome. Contra musicians also welcome to learn dance and band-dancer-caller communication skills beyond just playing tunes for dances. Web site: http://contraborealis.org/.
Fairbanks - Winter Dance Weekend: Variety of dance, music, and workshop events during the weekend. We have plenty of host homes for visitors to stay in if that will help make it happen for you. For more specific information check the Web site: https://sites.google.com/view/fairbanks-winter-dance-weekend/.
Fairbanks - Callers' Collective Practice: Want to learn how to call for contradances? The Fairbanks Callers Collective hosts monthly practice sessions, typically every 4th Sunday of the month. Musicians and a handful of dancers are also invited to join the session from 6:00pm oto 8:30pm at 1649 Red Fox Drive off Auburn Dr./Farmers Loop. Call 907-479-2006 for directions/info. Web site: http://contraborealis.org.
Fairbanks - Celebration of Life for Sue Cole: Will include a potluck, storytelling, music and a contra dance in honor of Sue Cole. Location: Pioneer Park Dance Center, 2300 Airport Way, Fairbanks, AK 99701, United States. Time: 5pm to 8pm. Web site: http://contraborealis.org.
Fairbanks - Bluegrass Camp for Kids: Weekday bluegrass camp for ages 8 through 16. Register in advance. Includes one evening BBQ and square dance. Web site: http://fairbanksfolkfest.weebly.com.
Fairbanks - Winter Folk Fest: One day music event in February with some dancing. Web site: http://fairbanksfolkfest.weebly.com/.
Fairbanks - Music in the Woods: Concert and dance as part of this event series at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Fairbanks, 4448 Pike's Landing Road. $10 suggested donation. Event starts at 7:30pm. Web site: http://www.facebook.com/musicinthewoodsseries.
Fairbanks - Squares - Summer Folk Fest: A square dance is part of the activities at this day-long event in Ester Community Park, 3566 Old Nenana Hwy, Fairbanks, AK 99709. Web site: http://fairbanksfolkfest.weebly.com/.
Fairbanks - The Pub - UAF: Dance at The Pub - UAF, 167240, Fairbanks, AK 99709 starting at 7:30pm. Web site: None.
Girdwood: Dance at the Sitzmark Pub Olympic Loop, Girdwood, Alaska 99587 from 9:30pm to 2am. Expect lots of smiling faces, good food, yummy beverages, epic skiing, and lots and lots of music and dancing!!!! Web site: https://www.facebook.com/BigChimneyBarnDance/.
Homer: Dances at the West Homer Elementary School (995 Soundview Ave) or McNeil Canyon Elementary School (52188 East End Road) or Kachemak Community Center, 41770 Bear Creek Drive, beginning at 7:30pm. Admission is $10 for adults and $8 for students. Kids 16 and younger get in free. Homer Recreation is sponsoring this dance because we can no longer use the school without liability insurance. Homer Recreation gets a dollar for each adult dancer to help support the program. Please bring clean, soft-soled shoes to dance in. Beginners welcome. Contact Willy Dunne at email@example.com or call Laura Patty at (907) 235-0173 for information. Web site: None.
Homer - New Year's Eve: Dance at SPARC South Peninsula Athletic and Recreation Center with parking at the Homer Middle School. 8pm to 12:30am. A family friendly, alcohol free, community event, complete with a potluck table for dishes and delights. Cost: FREE! Donations towards rental costs are greatly appreciated Web site: https://www.facebook.com/events/574322173128669/.
Homer - Class: Contra dance class at 7:30-9:00 PM. This is a Homer Community Recreation Program sponsored class and will be held at the HERC building. The class fee is $3/class. Call David Stutzer at 299-0103 for more information. Web site: None.
Homer - Homer Folk School: Dance at the Homer Folkschool at the Ageya Outdoor center, 61420 Florence Martin Court, Homer, AK, 99603. Time: 7:00 PM. It will be part of an open house for the Folkschool. Admission by donation. Web site: http://www.homerfolkschool.org/.
Hope: Dance at the Hope Social Hall Hope, Alaska 99631 at 7pm. Web site: http://www.thedancingbears.org/.
Juneau: The Juneau Folk Dance Community sponsors dances from September to May at various locations and dates. Dances usually run from 7:30pm to 9:30pm or 7:30pm to 11:00pm. Web site: http://www.juneaucontras.org/index.html.
Juneau - Alaska Folk Festival: Week-long, mostly music festival, held in the first part of April. Web site: http://akfolkfest.org/.
Juneau - Camp Damp: Held at the East River Methodist Camp in early August with music and dance workshops, dances, etc. Register in advance. Web site: http://www.juneaucontras.org/campdamp.html.
Juneau - New Year's Eve: The Juneau Folk Dance Community sponsors a New Year's Eve dances. Dances usually run from 7:30pm to 11:00pm but this one may be different. Check site for details. Web site: http://www.juneaucontras.org/index.html.
Kenai: Dances are sponsored by the Kenai River Folk Dancers and are held third Saturdays from September through April from 7:00pm to 10:00pm at Kalifornsky Beach Elementary School, 1049 East Poppy Lane, between Kenai and Soldotna. The cost is $5 for each adult. Children accompanied by an adult are free. Remember to bring dancing shoes that won't mark up the gym floor. Treats for the refreshment table are welcome. Web site: None.
Ketchikan - Squares - Alaska Square Dances: Dances once a month at 7pm at the Ketchikan Area Arts and Humanities Council, 330 Main St, Ketchikan, Alaska 99901. Admission: $5. Web site: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Alaska-Square-Dance/151672238197804.
Lost Lake (outside Fairbanks) - Dance Camp North: Weekend music and dance camp held in early September at a Boy Scout Camp approximately 50 miles from Fairbanks. Register in advance. Sponsored by the Contra Borealis Dancers. Web site: http://www.contraborealis.org.
Matanuska River Gravel Bar Dance: Annual event held in mid-July. Go down from Hicks Creek with an overnight on a gravel bar and then to Chikaloon/King Mt the next day. Contact Barbara Rowland firstname.lastname@example.org for more information, advice, requirements, etc. Web site: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1576031659348870 or for the 2015 edition https://www.facebook.com/events/420848438087045/.
McKinley Park - Tonglen Lake Lodge: Dance from 8pm to 11pm. Admission is $10. Web site: http://tonglenlake.com.
Palmer: Dances at the Salvation Army, 12271 E Palmer-Wasilla Hwy, Palmer, AK 99645 on various Thursdays of each month, 7 to 9 p.m. Admission $9 for adults, $5 for students, little ones dance for free. Web site: http://www.thedancingbears.com.
Palmer - Granite Creek Picker's Retreat: Weekend of concerts, workshops, and dances at 6402 Lossing Rd, Palmer, AK 99645. Web site: https://www.facebook.com/events/566151143559850/.
Palmer - Squares - State Fair: Square dance at 5pm as part of the State Fair. Web site: http://www.alaskastatefair.org.
Seldovia - Summer Solstice Music Festival: Mostly music festival held in mid-June with concerts, workshops and and at least one dance event. Web site: http://seldoviamusicfestival.wordpress.com.
Sitka: Dances at various locations in Sitka. Admission: $5 to help pay for the hall. Dance are from 7pm to 9:30pm. Web site: https://www.facebook.com/groups/329198083885027/.
Sitka - Crescent Harbor Shelter: Dance at noon. Web site: https://www.facebook.com/groups/329198083885027/.
Sitka - Techno Contra: Dance at the Beak Restaurant, 2 Lincoln St., Sitka, Alaska 99835 from 9pm to midnight. No experience necessary. All ages, genders, ethnicities, religions, political positions, and hair styles welcome. Web site: https://www.facebook.com/DJ-Contra-Culture-1874082966153369/.
Talkeetna: If you would like to get out of town and do some contra and square dancing, the quaint village of Talkeetna is hosting a "Take Back The Town" dance at the Sheldon Community Arts Hangar in beautiful downtown Talkeetna. The dance is from 8:00 to 11:00pm, but there is a pre-dance meeting and grilling and beverages from 7:00 to 8:00pm if you want to learn more about the Denali Arts Council, the generous sponsor of said event. They would love to get some interest up for a regular dance series, and who better to help stimulate that excitement than the wonderful Dancing Bears community of incredible dancers. Web site: None.
Wasilla: Dances at 3313 E Lakeview Rd, Wasilla with a variety of times. Web site: None.
Wasilla - Dancing Bears Dance Camp: Dance weekend held at King's Lake Camp on Memorial Day (U.S.) weekend in late May. Register in advance. Web site: http://www.thedancingbears.org/.
This page is part of the Contrdancelinks.com web site. For more information about contra dancing, visit these other site pages:
*The Colorado link will bring you to Dancing on the Web. The Maine link will bring you to the Downeast Friends of the Folk Arts. The New Mexico link will bring you to the New Mexico Folk Music and Dance Society. The Utah link will bring you to Utah Contradance Information. These fine organizations and individuals already have complete listings for these states and there is no reason for me to duplicate their efforts.
**As far as I know, there are no regular dances or events in Mississippi, South Dakota or Wyoming, but I have created pages if something changes in the future.