Square dancer caller Al Hipkins calls out steps during an open dance session Sept. 15 at Sherwood Heights Elementary School in Auburn. Andree Kehn/Sun Journal

Here are 12 basic calls for square dancing.

Circle left: All eight dancers join hands and walk in a left circle.

Allemande left: Everyone faces their corner, takes a left forearm with their corner and circles around until they are facing their partners again, drop arms.

Do si do: Face your partner, step past each other passing right shoulders and without turning around, step back to back then back up passing left shoulders until you are in front of your partner again.

Right and left grand: Everyone faces their partner, and taking right hands, walks past each other, then alternate hands with the people that come to you, until you meet your partner. Stop when you come to your partner.

Promenade: Couples in a skater’s position, men on the ladies’ left side, and slightly behind her, take hands and walk together in a counterclockwise circle until you reach your home position.


Swing: Couples in a ballroom dance position, circling in a clockwise direction a full 360 degrees or until facing the line of dance. Man twirls the lady under his arm to finish the swing.

Roll away to a half sashay: Men will basically just help the ladies roll in front of them to get to his other side. Starting and ending in a hand-holding circle.

Ladies in, men sashay: Ladies will go into the center, curtsy and yell “Whoo.” At the same time, the men will walk to the left to get on the other side of the women. Women back out, so everyone is in a hand-holding circle again.

Pass through, separate and go home: Heads (or sides) pass the person in front of you, passing on your right, turn your back to your partner and then walk around the other couple until you get to your home position.

Weave the ring: Everyone faces their partner and walks forward in a circle formation passing each other with alternating shoulders, starting with the right. Stop when you get to your partner.

Box the gnat:
Take right hands with your partner. Man goes behind the woman while she is turning left under his arm and ends up facing the opposite direction, never letting go of hands (like a jitterbug).

Wrong way grand: Just like the right and left grand except going the other way.

Source: www.callerdale.com.

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