First Tartan Night at Khandallah Town Hall

Our Tartan Night on Monday 19 April was a great ‘first’, and we can only hope all our future tartan nights in our new club home are such tartan-filled, sociable, and fun evenings.

Johnsonville members who can’t make it every week really made the effort to be there for this special occasion – the first Tartan Night we’ve held at Khandallah Town Hall, and the first time we’ve had a live band in the hoose.

A hall filled with tartan including the club’s bunting set the scene for dancing Rosnor Abbey

The hall was delightfully buzzy with six sets plus, Rod at the helm, and lively music from Aileen Logie, Hilary Ferral and Jason Morris.

Jason, Aileen and Hilary with Rod

Tartan rugs, saltires and some of the club’s tartan bunting brought a festive atmosphere, and the band’s dashing new tartan tabards and vest added extra colour. The lovely ambience of the hall was made even more inviting with the opening up of the adjoining lounge, where dancers could sit and chat.

Rod designed the programme to suit new dancers, and it was a pleasure to see Johnsonville new dancers doing so well, and to welcome one of Capital City’s new dancers amongst our eight guests. It always adds so much to the night to have dancers from other clubs join us.

Rosnor Abbey was the first dance on the programme, and those oft-forgotten rights and lefts at the end had us laughing from the beginning! It seems no matter how often we practise, and how often we remind ourselves, we do as the music tells us, and are ready to start again without those rights and lefts.

Our sanitiser-volunteers worked hard circulating between dances to keep our hands covid-hygienic, thank you all. Whenever I needed hand sanitiser, I had only to look around and there was a bottle approaching.

With four more dances under the belt, and great toe-tapping music to inspire us, we danced The Reel of the 51st to lead us into supper, and what a supper it was. Club members excelled themselves with delicious supper dishes, and Elizabeth Ngan and the supper team made it all look seamless – despite this being the first time they’d organised supper in the new venue.

A high-spirited The Reel of the 51st led us into our excellent supper

Since we can’t set up supper tables in the hall while we’re dancing, the team had a great tea-trolley storage system set up in the kitchen. When the time came, team members trundled out trolley loads of food, transferred it all to tartan-clothed tables, and had the tea and coffee ready to roll.

After a very sociable, chatty supper, we were ready for the last four dances on the programme.

For our new dancers, this was not only their first Tartan Night, but their first opportunity to be there at the end of the night, as we finished with club favourite The De’il Amang the Tailors.

We’re still feeling our way as to how we set up the hall for Tartan Nights, and have to be quite organised to get it all done in the short window between Pilates finishing and our start time.

Many thanks to all those who contributed to making the evening run so smoothly. The many volunteers at the beginning for set-up and at the end for pack-up, turned their hand to whatever was needed. Many people also gave their help in the kitchen. Altogether it was a great team effort, with new and long-standing members working together.

We’ll be passing on the club’s special thanks to the Pilates class and teacher, who generously let us come into the hall the minute they’d finished, and while the teacher was still packing up her gear.

All in all another fine night’s dancing, and another successful ‘first’ achieved at the club’s new home venue.

See more of Loralee Hyde’s photos here

Watch Aline Homes’ videos
Rosnor Abbey
Mr Michael Bear’s Reel
The Coleraine Rant (see more about Rod’s dance here)

President: Kristin Downey

Kristin Downey
22 April 2021

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