Our History

May 31, 1984 a meeting was held to set up an organization to Promote Country Dancing. Present were Mary Louise Smith, Louis & Muriel Kramer and Bob & Gertie Johnson. The first question was basic. Why organize a country dance club? Reasons were stated as follows: To promote, preserve, and enjoy country dancing. The world of country dance is wide " Country western, Country southern " including many old dances that are part of our American tradition. The club members would have an opportunity to learn these dances, to attend dances as a group and travel together to enjoy dancing. A group of performing dancer was being organized and other club members who cared to were eligible to audition to join the performing group.

Suggestions for the name of the club were Dakota Sunburst Country Dance Club, Dakota Sunshine Country Dance Club, Dakota Trail Country Dance Club ------ and the winner was "Dakota Country Dance Club". The club is also known as DCDC (many of us believe it stands for Drink Coffee, Drink Coffee).

The first elected officers were: Lou Kramer, President; Bob Johnson, Vice president; Lillian Schoeberl, secretary; and Fred Hlebichuk, treasurer. Pepper Hlebichuk was is charge of communications and Lee McInroy was in charge of entertainment. Mary Louise Smith was the Dance Director.

The performing dancers danced for the Civic Dance Association's Sunday on the Grass at the Fairground in July 1984. It was a hundred degrees in the Fairgrounds Building, but they didn't miss a step! Dave & Linda Medenwald, Fred & Pepper Hlebichuk, Bob & Gertie Johnson, Allen & Helen Bobeldyke, Gale & Marcie Ljunggren, Bob & Sheila Gunderson, Duane Lundgren and Anne Harris performed. Then on September 29th, the performing group danced at the Empire Mall. Dancing were Jerry & Kathy Nusz, Fred & Pepper Hlebichuk, Bob & Sheila Gunderson, Bob & Gertie Johnson, Marcie & Gale Ljunggren, Allen & Helen Bobeldyke, and Anne Harris.

It was in 1984 that Jerry and Kathy Nusz won a dance contest at the Rainbow. Mary Louise Smith was teaching at the Rainbow and the Stardust. Dances being done were the Two step, Waltz, Jitterbug, Sweet Sixteen, Ten Step, 4 Count Country Swing, Freeze, Louisiana, Schottische -- just to name a few. At another dance contest at the Rainbow, Dave Rasmussen and his partner, Rita Arneson placed in the finals in the Jitterbug contest.

By December of 1984, there were 102 members in Dakota Country Dance Club and going strong.