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“From the Dance Floor…” “Oh, what a night, late December back in '63 What a very special time for me As I remember what a night!” – The Four Seasons (1975) Well, you don’t have to go all the way back to December of ‘63 to experience the feeling of a very special time. All you needed was to drop in at Mojo’s Monday night as the Summerville Shagger’s Shag Club (SSSC) sponsored their first Junior Shaggers night. The night started at 6:00 pm with junior dance lessons conducted by Jo Patrick. Jo, a resident of James Island, is a member of the Islanders Shag Club, and the Charleston Shag Club. She is an excellent dancer in her own right with 29 years of shag dance experience. She has worked with Junior Shaggers (dancers under the age of 21) for over four years and has several former students competing on the National Shag Dance circuit. Jo also works with national shag dance champion, Sam West, at Junior SOS held in Myrtle Beach in July of each year. Junior SOS is an annual event where all of the popular shag dance venues open their doors to the junior shaggers with free dance workshops as well as social dances conducted throughout the five day event. Last year’s session had over 600 junior shaggers participate and is growing every year. Jo say’s she enjoys working with the kids because it is so rewarding to see them grow in the dance and the shag dance tradition survive through them. While Junior shaggers are not a new concept, it is brand new to Summerville and the SSSC. The opening night included beginner lessons for 14 juniors ranging from 6 to 16 years old and a mom and dad caught up in an “I will if you will” scenario. They started with the basic steps and progressed to a female turn within just a few minutes of work. Interestingly, it took most of us older folks several sessions to progress that far when we started. There was a break for snacks and sodas and then an opportunity to put what they learned to music. It is truly a thrill to see the juniors experiencing the shag dance tradition that we have enjoyed for so long. Remember, junior shag dance lessons at Mojo’s at Bi-Lo Galleria in Summerville every Monday night at 6:00 pm. For more info on Junior Shaggers and Junior SOS, keep checking the SSSC website or you can check out the Junior Shag Association website at http://www.juniorshaggers.com Shag Daddy Doctor Smooth, reporting from the Mojo hardwood and enjoying every step. “Oh, Let me git s’mo’ dat powda on my shoes. Lawd, it helps me move so smooth.”
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