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Sooke Squares need new members

Put your best foot forward in new year
Members and the public are welcome to join Sooke Squares for a free afternoon of dancing on Jan. 10 at the Sooke Legion. The dancing begins at 2 p.m. (Metro-Creative photo)

Kick off the new year with a group that’s footloose and fancy-free.

Sooke Squares wants people to join their dance and modern square-dancing group.

“We dance to a variety of music,” said organizer Richard Sharman. “We use classic rock, modern rock, and a little country and western. You don’t need to come with a partner, you don’t need special equipment or clothes, and there is no dress code, just a friendly, welcoming environment.”

One thing that differentiates square dancing from line dancing is that you don’t learn a whole dance in square dancing.

“You learn individual calls or moves, which the caller strings together in whatever order they want, so the dancers don’t know what will come next. To me, this surprise element makes square dancing so fascinating,” Sharman said.

Sharman helped launch Sooke Squares, originally just for seniors, in 2019 with assistance from a funding grant that covered the cost of the hall rental.

Although COVID put the brakes on the group for a couple of years, there was enough interest from the original members to start up again in 2022.

“We need 16 people to have two squares, so we need a few more members,” said Sharman, who first got involved in the activity in Ottawa in 2005.

Weekly sessions are Tuesdays from 2 to 4 p.m. in the upstairs hall at the Sooke Legion at 6726 Eustace Rd. The first session on Jan. 10 is free, with a $5 charge for each session after that each week to cover the cost of renting the hall.

There is also a yearly charge of $15, which covers liability insurance for all Canadian Square and Round Dance Society members.

“Each week builds on the previous week with new moves, so it’s important that newcomers start at the beginning,” Sharman said. “No previous experience is necessary. We start assuming you know your left foot from your right foot, and even then, some of us sometimes forget that. It’s a fun activity and good exercise both mentally and physically. It keeps you on your toes literally and figuratively.”

For more information, step over to, Sooke Squares on Facebook, or call Sharman at 250-884-8382.

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About the Author: Rick Stiebel

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