February 16th, 2012

Hi everyone,
Happy February! Winter rolls around again and despite a current lack of cold weather, we on the YDW Committee are already dreaming of next fall when colder nights will signal the coming of Youth Dance Weekend 2012. We’ve been working on putting together another great program — thanks for all your feedback on the evaluations! — and want to share a few exciting updates. As always, you can also follow what’s going on at our website: www.youthdanceweekend.org.

Location and Save the Date

One of the biggest questions facing us this year was which venue would best suit our needs: Kinhaven or Farm & Wilderness? As much as we love F&W, the more we talked with you, read your evaluations, and thought about it, the clearer it became that Kinhaven offers some significant benefits over F&W. Namely, the open campus and practice rooms accommodate a wider range of activities (outdoor games, indoor jam sessions, and much more) that support our mission.
We are therefore very excited to announce that YDW 2012 will be held from September 28th-30th, 2012 at Kinhaven Music School in Weston, VT.


The staff at YDW in 2012 will be stupendous as always. They are:
– Mary Wesley calling classy contras and superb singing squares
– Miriam Newman calling exciting English Country Dancing
– Riptide (Owen Marshall, Glen Loper, Alden Robinson) playing wicked cool tunes
– The Sail Away Ladies (Eden MacAdam-Somer, Ari Friedman and Mia Friedman) bringing their unique fiddlin’ flair
– DJ Improper dropping beats for techno contras

2011 Finance Recap

As we noted during the weekend, we were very pleased with the results of shifting to a pay-what-you-can system for registration fees. We ended up covering our costs without dipping into our reserves, and we believe the new system helped make our weekend even more financially accessible.
Here are a few stats for the data geeks among us:
  • Actual cost per person = $130
  • Min payment = $90
  • Max payment = $210
  • Average payment = $128.50
  • Average payment by age-group:
    • 18-22 = $115
    • 23-28 = $128
    • 29-35 = $143
    • 36+ = $150
  • Percent registrations below, at, or above cost:
    • Below cost = 30%
    • At cost = 36%
    • Above cost = 33%
(If you’d like to see graphical summaries of 2011 revenue, check out the pricing page on our website.)
Including t-shirt sales and other things, we were able to end up without any losses. So the point is, you all rock! You came together to make the weekend possible and more accessible. The experiment worked! Let’s make sure it works next year, too.

2011 Travel Grants

For the first time in YDW history we were able to award travel grants to those in need, thanks to generous support from CDSS. We gave out $750 to campers coming from as far away as Illinois and South Carolina. We plan to continue this program next year to help keepYDW accessible to people from all geographical regions.

2011 Saturday Night Recap

How did you spend your Saturday night at YDW 2011? Singing songs in the main hall, playing games in the dining hall, blues dancing in the Party Barn? We were extraordinarily excited by the enthusiasm you all showed for this camper-driven portion of the program. Thank you to all the people who both organized and participated in Saturday late-night activities! We’ll be asking for volunteers again this year, so if you’ve got an idea up your sleeve, be sure to bring it with you to the 2012 weekend.

2012 Registration

Registration for the 2012 weekend will be opening around June. Keep an eye on your email or the web site for more details.

What you can do now

1) Continue to channel your YDW energy into leadership, great and small, wherever you are dancing.
2) Help us spread the word about YDW, especially to friends further afield. (After all, that’s why we’re continuing with the travel grants.)
3) And, as always, if you have concerns, comments, or thoughts about YDW, we want to hear from you! Email us atinfo@youthdanceweekend.org if you have anything to share.
We hope you have a great winter, and we’ll see you on the dance floor soon!
The YDW Committee
Mog. Sarah, Max, Rebecca, Julia, Ethan