Board Meeting Updates
- Between July 12 and September 6, we had an average attendance of 41 people per dance. We ranged from having to pay 199.76 to making 14.50 (at the August open mic).
- Because of a new dancer feeling unwelcome recently, the consent/etiquette committee will have its first meeting before the October board meeting and make a start with developing concrete steps to address these kinds of problems.
- Because of the shortage of callers at the September open mic, we will discuss the possibility of having a “caller on duty” at open mic in the future, the way we have the band coordinator.
- Snacks seem to have gone will so far. Marie will continue to organize, and the board approved a budget of no more than 50 dollars a month.
- Mercury’s discussion on community values, best practices, and dance etiquette at Sugar Hill went well. The dance etiquette committee will meet to decide a time and place for a town hall discussion soon. The first discussion can be more open ended and help the committee plan the second one.
- Audrey as membership coordinator is overburdened and feels obligated to be at the dance every week. We will email our membership to see if we can get volunteers to be trained to sit at check-in or pack up or set up the check-in table once in a while.
- We are going to shorten the number of pages we have at check-in by only keeping a printed list of members. Non-members have to write their names and email on a list each time they come.
- Sugar Hill 2024 will tentatively be August 23–25. We made about 6,000 dollars this year. The board discussed changes to make for next year’s Sugar hill. We will have a party for lead volunteers on October 15th at Myke’s house.
- People really enjoyed the last open mic because the music was so good, and we made money at it.
- The board discussed Sugar Hill workshops, printing volunteer sheets, recruitment of final lead volunteers, where to have covid test checks happen, the T-shirt order, and other logistics.
- We are going back to Harmony the Wednesday after Sugar Hill.
- Marie had mentioned she would like to re-start snacks at the dance and was okay with being in charge of that. The board decided to do a trial run of snacks at the Wednesday after Sugar Hill. Concerns were about the amount of time it might take from our dances, which are shorter than they used to be, and whether it will become too much a burden for the responsible parties. The board thinks snacks are good for community building and will discuss how it went at our September meeting.
- Mercury wants to host a discussion on dance etiquette, best practices, values, etc., and put it into a zine. The board generally thinks it’s a good idea. One concern would be how to get people in the room to hear it. We used to have a welcome brochure and can give to Mercury to see if it’s worth updating. We will ask Mercury to come to our September meeting to share ideas. This dovetails with the consent issue, and we had discussed earlier having a committee work on that. Mercury could be on said committee. We could put a dance practice tip in each monthly newsletter as a way of educating people also.
- We discussed the possibility of doing a contradance at the Monroe County Fair, but decided the timing next year doesn’t work, since it falls during Cumberland.
- Our average attendance between May 3 and July 5 was 40 dancers. We had 21 new members in this period. BOTMDG had to contribute 40 dollars to break even. Our average weekly dance income was 168 dollars.
- We will take off vaccine information from the membership form when the next batch is printed.
- Attendance at the Bean King party was low, but it was still fairly enjoyable.
- Audrey is going to email people about taking shifts at the welcome table.
- We had a request from someone to hire a caller at a private party. Kyla is going to take the gig, but in future we are going to have a page for callers on the website that we can direct people to.
- There are 52 people registered for Sugar Hill so far. We have recruited lifeguards, are trying to get a printer for the t-shirts and more lead volunteers, and are getting approved to order food wholesale.
- We are trying to offer a cheaper preregistration rate for a la carte at Sugar Hill but are still working out the technical logistics of how people will register and pay, since the system is not set up for that.
- We are going to try to get some extra covid tests from the health department to have on hand and will have people checking covid tests near the Saturday registration table.
- Workshop leaders will be asked to provide a description of a couple of sentences.
- Attendance has been 38 each week besides May 10, at which no attendance was taken. We’ve had 12 new members and 2 new subscriptions. We came out ahead 13 dollars this month, probably because of the new subscriptions.
- The next caller’s collective will be July 30 at Marie’s house.
- The Boys and Girls Club has approved our application. We will move the dance line closer to the bleachers. We’ll have volunteers staff the table downstairs until 8, then leave a note on the door with Audrey’s google voice number. Her phone will be on the table upstairs for people to check to let dancers in.
- We discussed several things related to community building and recruitment of new dancers such as having more parties, cutting down the amount of information in community postings (could just have a link to the website), and the possibility of having an instagram page.
- On July 1, we will stop requiring membership to attend the dance. We will start welcoming new members in the newsletter and think of some additional incentives for members.
- We are going to start having small buttons that say “board member” so people know who to talk to at the dances.
- We will not have a fifth Saturday dance in September (Lotus) or December (New Year’s), but might try to collaborate with Lotus on a Wednesday dance on one side of the festival weekend.
- The Sugar Hill flier is finalized and can be distributed at Wednesday dances. We still need to figure out the lifeguard situation.
- We are going to purchase a new microphone case.
- Our next meeting is July 9 at 6 p.m. at Amber’s house.
- Range of donations at Wednesday dances since the last meeting was 161–203 dollars. Our average shortfall was 38 dollars per week, lower than usual. The second waltz workshop was not as well attended as the first one and the shortfall was 55 dollars. The shortfall on the Saturday dances was 790 dollars. It’s typical for us to lose money on Saturday dances, but usually more in the range of 400–500 dollars. Because we only made around 1000 dollars at Sugar Hill, we’re eating into previous Sugar Hill profit.
- We voted to not have a fifth Saturday dance in July because we don’t think there will be enough interest.
- Starting May 31, we will move to the Boys and Girls Club. They want to inspect the floor after our first dance before deciding whether to allow us to stay for the rest of the summer.
- We’ve reserved the boat for Sugar Hill. T-shirts will cost 20 dollars. The flyer has been drafted. Everyone who attends will need to register.
- We are dropping the vaccine requirement on May 31 based on the survey we sent out. It will create less administrative work for us and also brings us more in line with other groups.
- Our website needs a new theme to avoid having to be updated monthly. We can possibly have a volunteer committee to decide what it will look like and to update it. We will put something in the newsletter.
- We discussed the possibility of having a party in July.
- We had the opportunity to apply for a Community Foundation grant for dance, but decided the deadline (May 15) was too early for us.
- Audrey had looked into having a display in City Hall but they filled up too fast. She’ll try again in the next application period.
- At our next meeting, we’ll discuss whether to continue with the membership requirement.
- For the last month, we had weekly donations of 136–148 dollars most weeks. At the March 29 collaboration with Lotus, we got 387 dollars, which we split with them. We’ve gotten two more annual subscriptions and one monthly donation, giving us a base of 71.35 per week in months with four weeks.
- We have reserved the back room at Crazy Horse for dinner between the two dances on Saturday. It is best to give them a head count, so they know how many servers we need.
- The price for kids (under 16) at the Saturday dance will be 5 dollars for either dance and 8 dollars for both.
- Our next meeting will be May 7 in one of the Swain West conference rooms, time TBD.
- The Ted Hall celebration dance will have a memory table, a display of old Sugar Hill T-shirts, and three bands and four callers made up of people who played/called with Ted or call dances they got from him. All participants will be paid one dollar, and we’ll have donation jars for some of Ted’s favorite causes.
- We’ve gotten permission from the Boys’ and Girls’ Club to use it for a summer dance location. We can look into the Presbyterian church and the Bishop as back-up options if the BGC doesn’t work out.
- We will not have an attendance cap at Sugar Hill this year. People will be responsible for self testing for Covid within twelve hours before arrival and again on Saturday for those who arrived Friday. Vaccinations will not be required. Masks will be optional. We may change these rules based on conditions at the time.
- We will keep preregistration at Sugar Hill open until the week beforehand. Prices will tentatively be 55 dollars for the full weekend for preregistered adults, or 20 dollars for Friday and 40 dollars for Saturday, 80 dollars for the full weekend for late registered adults, or 35 dollars for Friday and 55 dollars for Saturday, and 15 dollars for the full weekend for children, or 5 dollars for Friday and 10 for Saturday. We need to make more money off Sugar Hill this year because the price of the facility has gone up and we did not get much revenue last year.
- The Sugar Hill committee can decide on the color of the T-shirts if the board does not have strong opinions, and we’ll ask them to look into the tank option. Suggested printers are In Case of Emergency and Bad Knees Tees.
- More and more people are surprised we’re still requiring Covid vaccinations. We will resurvey the membership to see if people want to keep this requirement. Occasionally, we get dancers who have not brought their proof of vaccination. Audrey has been asking them to wear one of our KN95 masks the first time this happens. The board approved this policy.
- In February, we had an average weekly donation of 132 dollars. This doesn’t include subscriptions, which give us an average of 62.73 per week in months with four weeks. BOTMDG has contributed 622 dollars so far this year.
- Some people leave before the end of the dance now that it’s longer, but possibly more will stay with daylight savings, the end of the basketball season, and greater stamina over time.
- The second waltz workshop has been moved to Sunday April 23, 2–4 p.m., due to a scheduling conflict at Harmony.
- On April 29, there will be a separate charge for the English Country Dance and the Contra with a discounted rate for those who attend both. Those who already pay for subscriptions will have their entrance fees covered. There is a break between the two dances. Mary Jean has reserved the back room at Crazy Horse as a shared dinner location. We may also have an after party somewhere. Hilary will make a Facebook event that can be shared and add to community calendars.
- The next board meeting will be April 16 at 6 p.m., location TBD. The May meeting will be on the 7th, with time and location TBD.
- Air conditioning at Harmony will not start until after this summer, so we’ll have to find a different summer dance location.
- We will have a special dance on one Wednesday in May to honor Ted Hall. A subcommittee has been set up to organize it.
- We will update the website and the caller instructions to say that role terms are up to the caller, but most callers use larks and robins.
- We previously had a Meetup group that Marie was paying for because she had a page for another group. We are going to discontinue that group.
- We’ve decided that children (under 18) need to be vaccinated against Covid-19, but bivalent boosters are not required for them.
- We are setting up committees for long-term projects to work on a standardized beginner lesson and consent/safe space. At a future meeting we will dedicate extra time to talking about our mission.
- Sugar Hill updates: Sam Bartlett is going to design the T-shirt. Further discussions will involve pricing and covid policies. Cathy will come up with a pricing proposal.
- There is some confusion about what the covid bivalent booster requirements are for children. We will discuss in further detail at the March meeting.
- Resolution approved to remove Marie from the bank account, add Kyla and Ingrid, and keep Mary Jean on so she can do backup for Ingrid.
- We have decided to keep the 5-minute break on Wednesdays. The caller should be responsible for beginning the second set, but the sound person can be a check.
- Tamara is starting a fund at Lotus in memory of Jamie. We will include a link in the next newsletter.
- We discussed April 2 as a possible date for the second waltz workshop. In addition to paying Tamara $50, we will pay Eric the same amount for his organizational work and coordination of the open band.
- We’ll have a collaborative dance with Lotus on March 29 with an extended beginner lesson. They will pay the performers and we will rent the hall. We’ll split donations (less the membership fee). Because Lotus does not require vaccines or masks for any of their events, we will not be requiring that for that Wednesday.
- In addition to paying the band for the 5th Saturday dance in April the usual Saturday rate, we will pay each performer $75 for an English Country Dance session in the afternoon.
- We are going to have a design contest for a free Sugar Hill T-shirt.
- We also discussed possible long-term projects and/or items to talk about next month: Having signs on the welcome table or in the hall in addition to announcements, standardizing the beginner lesson, improving our policy about unwelcome contact.
- BOTMDG has contributed an average of $39 to cover the costs of the last 4 dances. If the dance at The Bishop would have had local performers, we would have made money.
- Tom Morrison is the new Bean King. Party was nice.
- We’ll host a 5th Saturday dance in April. It will be preceded by an afternoon English Country Dance.
- Annual meeting on January 25 with pizza and voting for the 2023 board.
- We are not hosting the Mad Robin Romp spring dance weekend this year.
- We briefly discussed a “welcome to contra” handout, a template for BOTMDG announcements at the dance, and a written statement for callers to read regarding harassment. Perhaps the new board will take these projects on this year.
- A pay increase for performers was approved – BOTMDG will pay musicians $50 each up to a maximum of $150 per band. Callers will be paid $50. Open mic band coordinators will receive $75.
- If elected as an at-large board member in 2023, Mary Jean will continue to have signatory power to support the Finance Coordinator.
- The 2023 membership fee is $10 for adults (age 16 and up) (as of November $5 for year). Free for under 16. There is also an “annual supporter” or “subscription” option for $170 plus the $10 membership fee.
- Membership is required the third time someone attends the dance in 2023.
- We will provide pizza at the annual meeting.
- Board recruitment is going well.
- For 2023, we will require vaccines – specifically the most up-to-date vaccination possible. For most adults, that’s the bivalent booster (or having had Covid within the past 90 days).
- Membership will continue to be required but will be optional the first time that someone attends the dance.
- The dance will run for 2 hours, from 7:30-9:30. In January, we will have a waltz at 8:30. In February, we will have a 5-minute break at 8:30, and the second half of the dance will begin with a waltz.
- In December, we will discuss performer pay (especially in light of the longer dance time).
- We reflected on the Sing For Joy concert, Fifth Saturday October dance, and pizza party.
- We made plans for Winter Caroling and discussed the possibility of a Saturday dance in early 2023.
- BOTMDG will donate $500 to Lotus’ Friends of Old Time and Celtic Music. We will encourage Lotus to include educational events related to old time music and dance.
- We will discontinue printing the Orange Sheet at this time.
- We will not host a fifth Saturday dance on 12/31/22. At the November meeting, we will consider if we want to host a dance on a different Saturday.
- Annual meeting will be 1/25/23 before the Wednesday dance.
- Board recruitment committee is seeking board candidates.
- We will survey members and those interested in BOTMDG about masking, vaccinations, and membership over the next several weeks.
- Fifth Saturday Dance (10/29/22): sliding scale entrance fee $5-20, $15 is cost (for members and non-members). 7-10 p.m. Starting 10/29 and moving forward, we will pay travel stipends for out-of-town performers on Saturdays, at the same rate as our Wednesday dance.
- With extra income from the 50th anniversary celebration, we will set aside $1051 for the next BOTMDG anniversary celebration. Next month, we will consider a proposal about also donating some of the extra income to Lotus.
- We will keep using the Covid messaging that we used in recent email about possible exposure.
- On a case-by-case basis for medical reasons, the board can approve someone not wearing a mask in the dance hall if they are not dancing in the contra line.
- The board approves increasing advertising for dances.
- We will continue with vaccine requirement through this year; revisit for next year.
- We will check with Harmony School about performers removing masks on stage. If it’s okay – masks would be optional for callers and musicians while on stage.
- We will likely plan a date for a park picnic / board recruitment event like we did last year.
- Since mid-July, we’ve been bringing in less money than we had been.
- Last two August dances will be back at Harmony, and back at our old time, 7:30-9.
- Dancer feedback: several people like having two waltzes, people asked for some website updates, some people don’t like wearing masks, we’ve had new members every week.
- Still need lead volunteers for Sugar Hill. Discussed times for bands/callers and decided to use the usual times and format. Discussed registration procedure. Discussed masking – not required for those under 2; recommended for those under 5; required for 5 and up. Need to send reminders about testing, masking, etc. Need to post to website and Facebook that registration is closed.
- There is some ambiguity around the situations in which people should stay away after Covid exposure and for how long. We will revisit this.
- We had more income than expenses for the 50th anniversary. The committee will present a proposal about how to use the funds.
- The 50th anniversary was a great success! A large team came together to make it work. Around 160 people attended. Great music. Mike’s Dance Barn worked out well.
- We discussed dancer feedback related to people sitting out who might only feel comfortable dancing the lark/gent/lead role. Perhaps in the future we’ll have a town hall-style meeting about this and related topics. Eric will start a Google doc for announcements that callers give about dance culture (e.g. “Look for people sitting out and ask them to dance,” “ask your partner if they want to twirl,” “you can dance whichever role you want,” etc.)
- We discussed how to move forward with food, volunteers, etc. for Sugar Hill. We are in need of lead volunteers. We will not have separate lead volunteer shirts this year.
- We decided to require a home Covid test (with a negative result) at Sugar Hill upon arrival and again on Saturday for those who arrive on Friday.
- The July and August weekly dances will be at Windfall. July open mic will be acoustic, and then we’ll use our sound system after that. Masks will be required while in the dance hall, while entering the building, and while at the check-in table. Dancers can exit the dance hall to take a drink. One room at Windfall will be designated as a masks-optional space.
- Sugar Hill and the 50th Anniversary Celebration plans are moving along (details on website).
- We might revisit the possibility of a join event with IU International Folk Dance in the fall or winter.
- We discussed life membership but decided that it’s too much to keep track of year to year.
- Callers’ collective might take a break for July but continues to be well attended and helpful.
- In the last 5 weeks of Wednesday dances, we’ve had an average of 40 attendees (range 29-45) and 21 new members. We receive around $48/week in recurring PayPal donations and have received a total of $153-217 in donations per dance. After hall rental and paying performers, we used $28 from reserves, which is sustainable at this time.
- On our special Saturday dance on May 14, 46 people attended. We received $273 in donations and had $670 in expenses, and used about $400 from our account.
- Public comment included an idea about lifetime membership and about hosting a joint meeting with the IU International Folk Dance Group on campus. The board will discuss these items more in the future.
- Callers’ collective this month had 6 musicians, 5 callers, and 8-9 dancers. Next meetup is June 5 at 3 p.m. (at a new location – email for address). Masks and vaccination required.
- Feedback from dancers – some people have been not wearing a mask in the gym. It often falls on check-in volunteers to enforce the rules. Decided to try to put chairs on the landing when it’s not raining so that people can rest there and still see the dance.
- We discussed various possible venues for the weekly dance in June, and in the end decided to stick with Harmony for ease of location as well as momentum of new dancers. As usual, we’ll dance elsewhere in July and August, location TBD.
- We discussed and approved various aspects of the 50th anniversary celebration as well as Sugar Hill, as reflected on the BOTMDG website. Vaccination requirements will be the same as for the weekly dance, and masks will be required on the dance floor.
- For the last four dances – average attendance 39, 20 new members (up to 103 total for the year), $109-224/week in donations, total costs: $645, donations: $735.34. Year to date performer costs: $1565; hall rental: $1120; performers donating back their stipend: $156.50; BOTMDG has contributed $379.05 from savings.
- May dances will be at Harmony School. We will revisit the June dance location at our May board meeting, so that we have relevant Covid information. (We can consider outdoors with masks optional).
- Special Saturday dance: For members, entrance fee will be by donation. For non-members, the entrance fee is $12. Non-members have the option of becoming members if they would like. Up-to-date vaccination required for all.
- “Up-to-date” for our purposes will now mean that someone has had the vaccine, plus at least one booster if they are eligible.
- Sugar Hill and 50th Anniversary – same vaccination requirements as normal dances. Masking tbd.
- Sugar Hill – children who are not eligible for vaccines can come and can be on the dance floor.
- We also discussed dancer feedback. As dancers and callers, we want to try to get in the habit of normalizing asking people which role they want to do before a dance.
- Sugar Hill and 50th Anniversary committees continue moving forward with plans
- We will not dance at Harmony School during the months of July and August, with Marci Jane Lewis Park in Ellettsville being our default unless we come up with a venue we like better. At our April board meeting, we will revisit the time frame for moving outdoors.
- In the past, BOTMDG has offered scholarships for members to attend dance camps and workshops. Several board members are in favor of doing this again; we will look into what was done in the past and go from there.
- 50th Anniversary Celebration – committee is hoping to have save-the-date information by March 30 and open registration April 20. The committee is looking for someone to lead housing arrangements sub-committee to connect out-of-town attendees with local hosts.
- We are continuing to work on new name buttons.
- Eric will move forward with booking a Saturday dance (with flexibility to have it on a Saturday other than the 5th Saturday if needed).
- Becky and Audrey continue to work on the Orange Sheet.
- Cathy is confirming Sugar Hill dates.
- All board members (returning and newly elected) introduced themselves.
- We discussed Covid protocols and decided to continue with our current practices for now.
- We discussed the length of the dance and the possibility of extending it. In the end, we decided to keep the length of the dance as it is and revisit the topic soon, especially if it seems like enough dancers are energetically staying until the current end time.
- We decided to move forward with planning a 5th Saturday dance, on April 30.
- The 50th anniversary committee continues to meet and plan for a celebration.
- We are in the process of ordering name tag buttons for the dance, Sugar Hill, and the 50th anniversary.
- A subcommittee of the board will work to revive the Orange Sheet (a directory of people affiliated with BOTMDG), which has not been produced for the past couple of years.
- Ruth Schedler is bean king!
- We discussed what “fully vaccinated” means for us – “every vaccine someone is eligible for”. Therefore, ages 0-5 are “fully vaccinated” since they are not eligible for the Covid vaccine. If people ages 0-5 come to the dance, we decided they cannot dance in the line. Ages 3 and up need to wear masks.
- We discussed and finalized the liability form (posted to the webpage about becoming a member).
- Katie Zukof came to the meeting as a representative of the 50th anniversary celebration committee to discuss ideas with the board. We discussed hosting a reunion-type event in the fall, with a possibility of other events throughout the year, such as a history exhibit or talk at Sugar Hill and participating in the 4th of July parade.
- 4 dances since last meeting. Average attendance 25.5. Donations $76-126/week. Used $287 from savings to cover performer payments and hall rental.
- We decided that open mic performers are required to stop at the check-in table and share their contact information if they are not members. They are highly encouraged to become members.
- We decided to continue to require membership through 2022, and not to require a specific entrance fee but to continue with donations.
- We are working on a liability form for 2022.
- We also discussed the Bean King party, winter caroling, the annual meeting – details of which were sent to our email list.
- We’ll update our bank account signatories to include the current Dance Coordinator, Eric Schedler.
- We’ll edit the membership form to include information about the orange sheet, subscription options, liability, names for buttons, and pronouns.