October Swing Dance for Charity at Clearwater’s Fort Harrison puts Successful Learning on the Set List

Top Quote Swing Dancing got a modern boost at this fundraiser for a local literacy program. End Quote
  • Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL (1888PressRelease) November 02, 2018 - On Thursday October 18th, the monthly Swing Dances for Charity kicked off the 2018-2019 season in the Fort Harrison’s Crystal Ballroom in downtown Clearwater. The dance floor was packed and the spirits high, but more importantly, funds were raised for Bee’s Learning, a mobile tutoring program in St. Petersburg. The Fort Harrison is the international religious retreat for the Church of Scientology Flag Service Organization, who sponsors this monthly event.

    After refreshments, career dancer Ms. Arleene Bowles of Savoy South Dance Hall taught new dancers East Coast Swing. Based on six counts, East Coast Swing originated in dance schools in the 1940s when the Lindy Hop was found too difficult to teach beginners. Guests took their new-found skills to the dance floor, swinging to live music performed by the Flag Band. Expert dancers provided additional assistance to the beginners.

    At intermission, guests were invited to participate in an old-fashioned cakewalk. Similar to musical chairs, cakewalk dancers strut around in a circle single file until the music stops, then scramble to stand on numbers laid out around the dance floor. Those not landing on a number are eliminated. Cakes were awarded as prizes to winners in the categories of Best Dressed, Best "Strut" and Last Person Standing.

    “Illiteracy is at the root of many of today’s problems,” said Lisa Mansell, the Public Affairs Director for the Church. “Surveys have shown that 75% percent of those incarcerated are illiterate. Illiteracy costs American businesses and taxpayers more than $225 billion annually, through lost wages, unemployment and government assistance. Bee’s Learning is tackling illiteracy in the neighborhoods where needed.”

    The November Swing Dance will be held on the 15th and will benefit the Herman and Mary G Allen Outreach and the December 20th Swing Dance will benefit the Children’s Home Network of Tampa Bay. The cost is $15 and includes refreshments and the dance lesson.

    The dance lesson starts at 7pm, with open dancing at 8pm to the Flag Band. Partners are not required and experienced dancers will be on hand to assist Ms. Bowles. For more information about the event, please call (727) 467-6860.

    The Fort Harrison:

    Since completing construction in 1926, the Fort Harrison has been the home to many events for charitable organizations. The latest owner, the Church of Scientology, completed a top to bottom restoration of the For Harrison in 2009, and since then has hosted over 320 community events there. Scientology is an applied religious philosophy, founded by L. Ron Hubbard. The Church of Scientology makes its facilities available to non-profit groups as a service to the community.

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