Gets your boots on for the dance
WHILE it is now a popular event for families, the Emerald Community Family Bush Dance had interesting beginnings.
"It started because we send our captains down to Canberra each year for a leadership conference,” Emerald Christian College principal Graeme Johnston said.
"They have a bush dance down there with school captains from around Australia and I sent kids down there who didn't know how to bush dance from a country town.”
Fast forward a few years and the Family Bush Dance is now a night of good old-fashioned family fun.
"We have the evening broken into halves. The first half is for kids and we do a bunch of kids dances and the second half is more for adults with a bit more sophistication to it,” Mr Johnston said.
"Everyone dresses up - we have a photographer there and you can get dressed up in country gear and get a family photo.
"There's games for the kids outside as well so they can have a lot of fun.
"Lots of fairy lights - it just feels like a proper country dance.”
Mr Johnston said the evening was popular with families as it was a non-alcoholic event.
"There's food to eat and coffee to drink and it's just good old-fashioned family fun,” he said.
Anyone could attend the event, Mr Johnston said, as it catered for different skill levels.
Dance styles include the polka, square dancing and progressive dancing.
"Our bush dance callers, they just start the evening out with some simple ones and they just take them (dancers) as far as they can go,” Mr Johnston said.
"But by the end of the night, they're doing the progressive dance and they're doing square dancing and all sorts of things.
"It's amazing how quickly people pick it up - and they remember from last year.”