Registration has opened for the 3rd Annual Twelfth Night Ball, hosted by the Dayton chapter of the Jane Austen Society of North America (JASNA).
Our own Tom Tumbusch will be the dance caller for the evening, which will also feature Regency-era card games, a light supper, and other refreshments. Members of the Cincinnati English Country Dancers receive a $10 discount off the price of admission.
The event will take place on Saturday January 6, 2018 from 6-11 pm at the historic Patterson Homestead. In case of bad weather, the snow date is January 13, 2018.
Attendance is limited, and admission costs go up after December 22, so register early if you plan to attend. Registration information and additional details are available on the JASNA Dayton event web page.
On November 16, Marie Terres and Amy McFarland (aka Rare Privilege) will be sitting in with Duck Creek during our regular Thursday dance. They’re joining us just for fun, so there’s no extra charge!
Rare Privilege features Maria Terres on fiddle and Amy McFarland on piano. Their music has often been described as “way more sound than we ever though two instruments could make.” Devotion to their individual instruments, a sense of innovation, and a deep love and respect for the living tradition of folk music and dance combine to give their music an imaginative and lyrical energy and drive.
Rare Privilege plays for New England Style Contra Dancing, Irish and Scottish Social Dancing, English Country Dancing, and many other traditional dance styles. Based in Wisconsin, they have performed throughout the US and Canada.
If you’ve been here before, you may have noticed we’ve moved our “digital furniture” around a bit. In fact, we’ve completely rebuilt the CECD site from the ground up.
Why the change? Because nowadays folks are communicating in a lot of new ways on new devices, some of which didn’t exist when we built our original website.
The key thing that’s different “under the hood” is our website now runs on WordPress, a free, open-source content management system. In plain English, that means some spiffy software now handles a lot of the technical stuff for us, while allowing ordinary humans to add and update information a lot more easily.
The visual design we’re using is pretty basic for two reasons. First, it makes the site readable on most devices. Second, I don’t know a lot about WordPress design. So I’ve essentially adapted one of the most common themes (aka “do-it-yourself website kits”) I could get without spending any of the group’s money. If you’d like to see fancier typefaces and other frills on the site, I note the webmaster position is currently vacant.
Why did we bother changing the website?
While the revised site isn’t likely to win any major design awards, there are two important things it does give us:
More efficient communication with our community. The new site makes it much easier for our board and volunteers to get the word out online. Notably, it’s now possible for people who don’t know how to write HTML code to change the website. For example, committees that organize special dances will now be able to post and edit event information directly, without having to wait on the webmaster or another busy volunteer to put it online. (Did I mention we don’t currently have a webmaster?) They also won’t have to worry about breaking something that makes the website run. In addition, time-sensitive information such as weather cancellations can now be posted much faster. This will benefit not only our members, but newcomers and visitors too.
Easier use on mobile devices. In addition to “old-fashioned” desktop computers, our site is now optimized to work on fancy phones, tablets, and other mobile devices, which make up a growing majority of internet use. It’s now simpler for you to check the latest updates easily from just about any mobile gizmo that has a web browser. With luck, this will also make it easier for new folks to find out about the group, and perhaps even use their spiffy GPS-enabled devices to find their way to a fun-filled evening of dancing.
And yes, there’s link to the Facebook page for the social media junkies. You know who you are. 😉
Many thanks to Dwight Blubaugh for creating and maintaining our original website, and for helping to launch the conversion to WordPress.