Annual seniors’ Christmas dance

Kate Wimberly
Staff Writer

Camaraderie was shared by all who attended Newton’s Annual Senior Citizens Christmas Dance.

Hosted by the Parks and Recreation Department on Thursday, December 12th, seniors enjoyed a night of dinner and dancing. In an event which began over thirty years ago, an average of 50-100 individuals have come out with their best dance moves in tow, from the jive to calypso.

Carol Stiles, Newton Parks and Recreation Assistant Director, explained the benefits she has seen as a result of this event, and shared that even though some individuals sometimes move away, they often come back to attend the dance, even from a couple of hours away. She shared that during her career she has seen that this dance is something that is highly anticipated and enjoyed by members of our community.

She also discussed her own personal sentiments for the dance, and why it is one of her favorite events. “My dad was always here with my mom, so it’s very sentimental for me. It’s the holidays, so we want to bring people together, and for them to have fun and to be happy.”

Carol Stiles also mentioned happenings to look forward to in Newton, such as the East Newton Christmas Parade to be held on December 21st, starting at 1pm on South Ervin Avenue. (See article by Lindsay Robins in the Tuesday, December 10 edition of the ONE Observer News Enterprise.)

Shake Down Band, originally from Taylorsville, NC, played an eclectic mix of music from Johnny Cash to the Twist. There were opportunities to sit and visit with one another, and to simply enjoy “reminiscing about the days of old” listening to “that old time rock and roll” played by the band together.

“Several don’t even come to dance; they come for the socialization and to have fun. And with it being Christmas, several attend just for the joy of being around other people...the camaraderie.” Carol Stiles stated.

Whether it’s friendship, romance, or the desire to meet new people, the Annual Senior Citizens Christmas Dance is an opportunity to enjoy togetherness to the backdrop of live music and movement. There were also awards for those who traveled the farthest to attend, the oldest individual in attendance, and the longest married couple in attendance. Contest winners received coupons from various businesses and restaurants. Seniors were also able to enjoy appetizers, dinner, and dessert throughout the evening.

If you were unable to attend this exciting event, or are just looking forward to another opportunity to dust off those classic and iconic dance moves, and spend an evening with friends, the Newton Parks and Recreation Department also hosts Valentine’s Day and Soldiers’ Reunion Dances for individuals and couples ages 55 and over.

For anyone who is interested in attending or volunteering for these events, they may call Carol Stiles at 828-695-4317 for more information.