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Chair Etiquette

by Gary Tomlinson, Flutterbyes, Grand Rapids, Michigan

I’ve been to many dances where finding a chair has been difficult even though there are plenty of chairs with nobody in them. How can that be you ask? The problem is that people “save” them by putting items on the seats. Even though they are not using them (they are dancing), they willnot allow anybody else use them either. I have been to veryfew large dances where there are enough chairs for every dancer to sit down at the same time.

Back in 2011 when the National Convention was in Detroit, Michigan, I had just come from one dance room to anotherexhausted, needingto rest for a while, and every chair was vacantsave for the items on the seats. I had to sit on thefloor (and eventually I had to get off the floor - no easy feat). So I developed the following Chair Etiquette for Square Dancing.

At dances (especially conventions, dance weekends or special caller),there are oftennot enough chairs for every dancer. Please note that youdo not“own” the chair. Please be considerate and allow the chair to be utilized when you are dancing. Here are someguidelines:

You may put your jacket or sweater on the back.

Youmay sit in a chair with someoneelse’s jacket or sweater on the back.

You may put purses, shoesdrinks, bagsetc. under any chair.

You may notplace items on the seat of any chair.

You may move any items left on the seats of chair and place it underneath so you may sit down.

Of course there are reasons for needing“that” chair (e.g. you have to be nearsomething, physical limitations, etc.), then it is perfectly acceptable to“save” that chair, but please be considerate of others.


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