Swingin' Tern Dances

Swingin' Tern on FacebookVisit Swingin' Tern on Facebook

LOCATION: The First Presbyterian Church Parish House, 14 Hanover Road, East Hanover, NJ, a smoke & alcohol free environment

ADMISSION: $10 per adult, $5 per student with Student ID.

TIMES: Beginner’s workshop at 7:30 PM. Dance follows, 8 PM - 11 PM (unless otherwise indicated). Please carry in clean, soft-soled shoes for dancing. Non-dancing children must be supervised at all times. Dance at your own risk.

INFORMATION: (973) 295-6864 or send email to E-mail

What, you may be asking, is Contra Dancing? Watch the video at right and see our About page for a video and an explanation.


October 4: Sue GolaContras
Raise the Roof: Mat Clarke – fiddle; Judi Stellar – hammered dulcimer; Kathy Talvitie – guitar, piano; Paul Morrissett - bass

Gola goes to new heights to lift the dancers’ spirits to Raise the Roof. As we eavesdrop on the well-pitched and lofty tunes of Raise the Roof, we girder our strength to vault into the contra cupola. We don’t want to shingle you out but miss a slate like this and you’ll hit the ceiling and end up in the gutter.

October 18: Melanie Axel-LuteContras
Fish Family: Bill Christopherson - fiddle; Tom Phillips - fiddle; Mystery Pianist

You can tune a lute but can you tunafish? Find out as Axel-Lute harps on clarion calling while the Fish Family skips the sax and goes straight to violins. Don’t find yourself in a piccolo by zithering around, call your partner on the xylophone and say cello for a harmonium evening. Don’t cittern this one out or you’ll be at risk of a psaltery with flageolets. Accordion to tradition, at the end of her performance, Melanie will balalaika diva.

November 1: Techno Contras
Dan BlackTechno Contras
DJ Improper: Jeremiah Seligman – electronica

CONTRAS WITH A TECHNO BEAT UNDER BLACK LIGHT. In a twist of the contra tradition, Dan Black will be calling traditional contra dances to the music of dJ improper, weaving together pop, alternative and club music for a unique dancing experience. Lighting will be low with black and feature colored lighting. Glow sticks will be provided.

$15 admission/$10 students

November 15: Harvest Hoot
Joe DePaoloContras and Swing Dancing
Oy Diddle Diddle: Joe DePaolo - percussion; Sam Zygmuntowicz - fiddle, mandolin; Marnen Laibow-Koser - piano, viola; Danny Elias - clarinet, saxophone

Joe DePaolo will be calling contras to the swing infused contra music of Oy Diddle Diddle. There will be a few swing couple dances interspersed throughout the evening of contras. Swing workshop by Ken Crawford at 7pm. Beginners’ contra workshop by Joe DePaolo at 7:30.

December 6: Double Dance
Janine SmithContras
Perpetual e-Motion

Advanced Contras for two hours in the Afternoon from 4pm until 6pm followed by our All-Level Evening Dance from 8pm to 11pm.

$10 afternoon/$15 evening [$5 afternoon/$10 evening for students].

The hall will be open during the dinner break for those that want to bring their own food. There are several restaurants close by, some within walking distance. Area restaurants can be found on the File tab on the main Swingin' Tern's Facebook page.

There will be a beginners' workshop at 7:30pm prior to the evening dance.

December 20: Will MentorContras
Hog Wild
Wednesday, December 31: New Year's Eve Dance
Bob IsaacsContras, Squares, Couple Dances
Coracree: Jane Rothfield - fiddle; Bill Quern - tenor banjo, mandolin & melodeon; Sarah Gowan - guitar; Allan Carr - bass

Pot Luck Supper 7pm. Dancing from 8pm till 1am. Admission is $20 if purchased by 12/24; $25 after 12/24 and at the door. [Students $12 advanced/$15 at the door].