Contra Dance, Stellar Days & Nights, Waltz party

Arkansas Valley Music and Dance Newsletter

In this issue
New Presiden
Half Price Sale
Stellar Dance Weekend
Waltz Etc.

Salida Contra Dance this SAT., JAN. 19

 Come one, come all! Arkansas Valley Music and Dance and Salida Rec invite you to the lively dancing and live music of the Salida Contra Dance this Sat., Jan. 19 at the Scout Hut in Riverside Park.  A beginning contra lesson will be held at 7 pm followed by dancing from 7:30 – 10pm.  This month’s dance features calling by Eleanor Fahrney and music by Miner’s Creek (Megan Smith – fiddle, Jacob Smith – guitar, and Amanda York – mandolin).  Bring a treat for the dessert potluck, if you’d like.  $7/person ($5/AVMAD member). Visit for more details.

AVMAD Welcomes New President, Ron Chalian

From Former President, Eleanor Fahrney

Dear Friends,

Almost 10 years ago, I led the first Salida contra dances at the former Salida Café.  Soon after, I started Stellar Days and Nights dance and music weekend and began teaching swing and waltz in the area.  What a treat to be part of how dance in the valley has evolved since! In 2007, I formed the nonprofit Arkansas Valley Music and Dance with the vision of furthering social dance and live music for dance. I’ve been so blessed by the friends made, the fun had and the professional experience gained from calling and teaching dance, organizing events and running AVMAD as its president for the last five years.  I’m thrilled to see how dance is permeating our community these days.  AVMAD’s reach has grown and we have a passionate and active board of directors.
Per our bylaws and my need to scale back with a 2-year-old at home, my term as president of AVMAD is coming to a close.  I’m so pleased to be passing the reigns to Ron Chalian who I’ve known for years through dancing.  You can read more about him below . . . Please welcome him! Over the next year, I plan to remain on the board and support our efforts through grant writing.  You’ll still see me calling and teaching dance, especially through AVMAD’s new outreach in the schools. In particular, I look forward to continuing to dance and play music with you!

From Newly Elected Board President, Ron Chalian

Hello dancers, musicians and those who are just unfolding.  By way of introduction, I’m Ron Chalian, delighted to be playing this new role in yet another one of life’s many adventures.  I’m a part-time Arkansas Valley resident gone permanent after retiring from a great run as a high school assistant principal.  Other adventures have included teaching English, selling mountain real estate, building my log home in Trout Creek Meadows and joining the Navy.  Avocations and interests include sailing, skiing, hiking, biking, reading, playing djembe with River Tribe African Dance, and yes, dancing!


Like many of you, my life is driven by strong family ties, good friends, good food, good physical, emotional and spiritual health and an appreciation for the arts, the environment and both indoor and outdoor stuff.  I say “Like many of you” because if you are dancing and/or playing any kind of musical instrument, we very likely share these values.  If not, keep reading because you are someone I want to bring into our dance and music community!  Did you happen to read the article titled “Dancing makes you smarter” in the December 6 issue of the Chaffee County Times?  You can read it at  Go to archives and search by the article title. Enough said?


Serving on the AVMAD Board of Directors with so many energized and yes, dance-induced “smart” people, I’m excited about the direction in which all the dance and music organizations in the valley are going.  This is a dance, music and art happenin’ place, and I love being part of it.  Thank you AVMAD Board for electing me president!

Chaffee County Dances 2013 Calendars are now HALF PRICE!
A few “Chaffee County Dances” 2013 calendars remain and are now half-price (was $12, now $6). Net proceeds go to Arkansas Valley Music and Dance and Boys and Girls Clubs of Chaffee County.  Support these local nonprofits and buy yours today at BV or Salida Chamber of Commerce or other area businesses. Visit for complete list of vendors.

Sign up now for STELLAR DAYS & NIGHTS
Held Thurs., Feb. 21 through Sun., Feb. 24 at Adventure Unlimited Ranches in Buena Vista, Stellar Days & Nights is a weekend of fabulous live music and traditional dancing, including contra, squares, waltz, hambo, and more.  Participants also enjoy instrumental and singing workshops.  Pre-registration is required.  Half-day spots available for Arkansas Valley Music and Dance members. Visit

SAVE THE DATE: Waltz, Etc. Party FEB. 12
Arkansas Valley Music and Dance and Salida Rec invite you to Waltz, Etc., Party on Tues., Feb. 12.  Kimball Edell will teach a “grab bag” lesson at 6:45 pm and a beginning waltz lesson at 7:30 pm.  Then the evening continues with open dancing to fabulous tunes from 8:15 – 9:15 pm.  $7/person ($5/AVMAD member).  No partner or experience needed.  Visit
Contact Information
Eleanor Fahrney, AVMAD Marketing Coordinator.  Phone: 719-221-2074

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