Called to Dance

Alaska Pride

If you have to walk on thin ice, you may as well dance

Grandma Elve Halvor loved to dance. After high school, in the early 1930s, she moved from the farm to the big city of Seattle and her passion was going out dancing. A child of Swede-Finn immigrants, music and dancing were a way her family transmitted culture, and that’s how she met my grandfather.

Seventy-five years later, that passion for dancing runs in my blood. My introduction to dancing came in the fourth grade when my parents began sending me to the Runeberg folk dancing group. Every Monday night we would meet in the Blossom Gulch Elementary School Gym, where Leola Baumgartner and Olga Hosking steadfastly worked to pass on their love of dancing and the art of the polka and schottische to a group of distracted 11-year-olds. We girls quickly learned to dance the lead parts, as…

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