“It’s not very often you get talent like this all on the stage all at the same time!” says Carolyn Markotich, program director for the Cape Breton Regional Municipality Recreation Department. “Even if people aren’t square dancers, they can still join in for fun, or if they prefer just come down to listen to Cape Breton’s finest fiddlers.”
Markotich is referring to the Action Week Festival’s first ever Boxing Day Square Dance fundraiser featuring fiddlers Chrissy Crowley, Kimberley Fraser, and Dawn and Margie Beaton scheduled for the Joan Harriss Pavillion (The Big Fiddle), Monday, December 26, 7 pm, on Sydney’s Esplanade.
Admission for the event is $10 for adults and $5 for children 12 and under, and are available at the Cape Breton Curiosity Shop, Charlotte Street, Sydney, and at the door on the night of the event.
“If you remember this past summer, as part of the Sydney Action Week Festival, one of the festival events scheduled for the Sydney Boardwalk was Cape Breton’s Largest Outdoor Square Dance on Wednesday, August 3,” explains Markotich, the key organizer for Sydney’s popular summer festival. “Well, the weather didn’t cooperate and we had to move the event indoors to the Big Fiddle (Joan Harriss Cruise Pavilion). What a success it was! The place was packed – positive feedback was tremendous – and people were asking when the committee would put on another one.”
“In the feedback received after our summer event, parents told us they were happy there was no bar at the event and they had the opportunity to bring their children with them when they went dancing,” Markotich adds. “And the kids had a great time. There were several sets just for the children and caller Burton MacIntyre made sure they learned and enjoyed. It was a great feeling to see the kids learning to square dance and keeping the tradition alive. And the Christmas season is about family.”
“The (Action Week) committee starts working on plans for the next festival immediately–in addition to the 2013 Action Week which will be the 40th!” Markotich says. “And fundraising is always a big part of the agenda. So the committee felt that based on the success of the square dance this past summer and how people always seem to be looking for something non-boring to do on Boxing Day we would try a Boxing Day Square Dance.”
Markotich says the committee is grateful to their community sponsors, Chant’s Funeral Home and Little House of Faith Productions, whose donations help defray the cost of venue rental, performers’ fees, and advertising among other expenses.
Markotich says the Action Week Committee is quite excited about the event and they hope they get a great response.