Skip to content

Trail Blazers: Grab y’er partner, dosey doe

Trail Blazers is a weekly feature in partnership with the Trail Museum and Archives
Square dancers from across the West Kootenay, Okanagan, and U.S. filled the Cominco Arena in May 1956. Photo: Trail Historical Society

As May long weekend nears, Trail Blazers is paying homage to the days of yore and a favourite social outing with unlimited numbers; square dancing.

“Square dancing was a very popular pastime for residents of Trail and the club was active in the 1950s,” says Sarah Benson-Lord from the Trail Museum and Archives. “Here, dancers gathered for the third annual jamboree held in May 1956 in the Cominco Arena.”

Square dancing involves four couples (eight people) and each dancer is numbered.

“Callers” prompted the dancers through a series of choreographed steps to the rhythm of the music.

“Callers for the 1956 jamboree traveled from Oliver, Winfield, and Nelson and from Metaline Falls, Richland, and Elmer City in Washington to lead over 200 dancers,” Benson-Lord notes.

“The jamboree included clinics and demonstrations and wrapped up with a well-attended breakfast.”

More Trail Blazers:

Trail Stricken By Flood, 50 years later

A Summer Place

Gyro Park, the perennial summertimehaven

Ceremony honours Trail airman, 17, and 22 others killed in Second World War

Remembering a young man from Trail who went to war and never came home

Long-lost poem recounts life of an air gunner

Colourful memories in ‘Silver City Linings’

Big Fish Tales

Great ol’ classics on four wheels

Memories of Dixie Lee linger

Sheri Regnier

About the Author: Sheri Regnier

Read more