OUTLOOK: Boot Scootin’ Boogie your way to fun and fitness with line dancing lessons

Published 4:00 am Sunday, June 25, 2023

Stacey Mahoney has one goal: to help others stop being wallflowers when it comes to line dancing.

The Southern Cultural Heritage Center is offering weekly classes where participants can learn a variety of group dance steps from “Boot Scootin’ Boogie” to the “Cha Cha Slide.”

And to put those lessons to use, a Country and More Dance Party is held once a month giving folks the opportunity to cut a rug. Serving as the dance instructor for the classes is Stacey Mahoney, the executive director of the Southern Cultural Heritage Foundation.

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Mahoney, who has a background in dance, said the notion to hold the line dance classes and dance parties evolved following a conversation she had with two women.

“A couple of ladies came to me after they had attended a dance event in Pearl and said, ‘Hey, this is what we went to and it was so much fun, and you’ve got the space for it,’” Mahoney said.

Upon hearing their request, the first dance party was held in March.

Afterward, Mahoney said several people approached her about offering dance lessons.

“They said, ‘Hey, we need practice. Can we have practices, so when we have the dance party, we will know what we are doing?’” Mahoney said.

Thus, weekly line dance classes began being offered. Mahoney said these classes, which include men, women and people young and old, have ranged in attendance from five people to 20.

In addition to the “Boot Scootin’ Boogie” and the “Cha Cha Slide,” other oldies but goodies are taught as well as some of the newer line dances, which have included the Lonely Drum Line Dance and the Shivers line Dance — fashioned from Ed Sheeren’s song “Shivers.”

The line dance practice classes begin at 5:30 p.m. and are held on Mondays at the SCHC academy building, 1302 Adams St., “except for the third Monday of the month when we have board meetings, and on holidays,” Mahoney said.

The cost for each class is $5.

The Country and More Dance Parties are held on the second Saturday of each month from 7 to 9 p.m. at the SCHC auditorium. The cost to attend the party is $10.

“What we do is have a two-hour playlist set and dancers get a program that has all the dances listed in the order we will be doing them. We also have a cash bar and refreshments,” Mahoney said.

Prior to the dance party, Mahoney said a tutorial is offered from 6 to 7 p.m.

“That’s so we can go over a few of the dances. A lot of people who are coming to the dance party will come to the tutorial,” she said. The tutorial is included in the $10 cost of the dance party.

Mahoney said participants of both the dance line classes and parties have fun.

“And it’s a great way to get your exercise,” she said.

Dance classes and dance parties are scheduled to continue through the summer. For more information, call 601-631-2997 or visit www.southernculture.org.

About Terri Cowart Frazier

Terri Frazier was born in Cleveland. Shortly afterward, the family moved to Vicksburg. She is a part-time reporter at The Vicksburg Post and is the editor of the Vicksburg Living Magazine, which has been awarded First Place by the Mississippi Press Association. She has also been the recipient of a First Place award in the MPA’s Better Newspaper Contest’s editorial division for the “Best Feature Story.”

Terri graduated from Warren Central High School and Mississippi State University where she received a bachelor’s degree in communications with an emphasis in public relations.

Prior to coming to work at The Post a little more than 10 years ago, she did some freelancing at the Jackson Free Press. But for most of her life, she enjoyed being a full-time stay at home mom.

Terri is a member of the Crawford Street United Methodist Church. She is a lifetime member of the Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary and is a past member of the Sampler Antique Club and Town and Country Garden Club. She is married to Dr. Walter Frazier.

“From staying informed with local governmental issues to hearing the stories of its people, a hometown newspaper is vital to a community. I have felt privileged to be part of a dedicated team at The Post throughout my tenure and hope that with theirs and with local support, I will be able to continue to grow and hone in on my skills as I help share the stories in Vicksburg. When asked what I like most about my job, my answer is always ‘the people.’

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