President - Glenda Matthews
NEW! For a list of the past presidents, please click here!
NORTHERN TWISTERS SQUARE DANCE CLUB
PRINCE GEORGE, B.C.
A SHORT HISTORY: 1957- 2012
Around the time when square dancing was becoming popular in Northern
B.C. and any outlying areas of the province, a group of 45 people
calling themselves The Happy Gang started to meet regularly in the
In 1961, the group changed its name to the Northern Twisters, the name that has stayed. With Chuck Gabriele as President and an active membership, things went with a “SWING." Clare Anderson, Mac MacLeod, Sid Thornton and Valerie Brown all helped with the calling and teaching in the early days.
By 1963, Jim Harrison, arrived here from Haney. Jim was a qualified instructor and a proficient Caller. Jim became the regular Caller for the club and the teacher for the New Dancers and children’s classes that were started. In 1965-1966, we had twelve squares of New Dancers and a children’s class of 200, as well as a Round Dance class. Part way through 1966, Ken Laidman took over the calling from Jim. Then in the fall of 1968, Danny Morrison, a newcomer to town, became our regular club Caller. By this time the regular club night was Tuesday and New Dancers night was Thursday. Every fourth or fifth Saturday we had a party night, and on an annual basis, held a Bunny Hop and a Spring Jamboree.
During Centennial year (1967), many of our members made pioneer type
clothing and paid visits, clad in our Centennial outfits, to other
Square Dance clubs. Visits were made to other clubs in
In 1968 the club began the publication of an annual membership booklet
that carried the constitution, club activities and Region 5 member
responsibilities, as well as a list of the names, addresses and
telephone numbers of all its paid-up members. This practice, started by
Bernice Roberts, is still carried on. The first publication listed the
following club members, (some are still dancing) Anne Bellamy, Bill
Fatum, Rose Gray, Kay Greensill, Stan Henry, Tom & Phyllis Pidcock ,and
started “Pony Express," a square dance publication that was distributed
In 1970 the club decided to limit its special events to two main dances with outside callers and a Spring Jamboree. Tom and Phyllis Pidcock were president couple that year. When a dance in late January was suggested, Phyllis, a Scot, presented the idea that we commemorate Robbie Burns’ birthday, and we have done so ever since. Phyllis gave the “Address to the Haggis” each year until she retired in 1985. Shortly after, the club members decided to commemorate the first snowflake of the year by having a Snowflake dance in November, a tradition that has continued to the present day. In addition, New Dancers host both a Halloween and a Christmas dance.
Many of our members have become traveling dancers and have danced with
clubs in many parts of
of our dancers attend National Conventions and, during the First
In 1972 our Club Caller of many years, Danny Morrison, retired and we were fortunate to have Ed England available to step into his shoes. During the next few years his wife Norma started cueing Rounds - a definite asset to the club.
In 1978 at our Spring Jamboree held in May, we added a special event, a
Square Dance around
Mr. Pee Gee (
In 1980-1981 Bruce and Wendy Thiel taught round dancing from till till Main Stream dancing started.
In 1981-82 the new dancer club caller was Ab McQuillan. In 1986 we decided to give Honorary Membership to dancers having twenty-five consecutive years paid up membership with the club. Clare and Rose Anderson were honored at this time.
In 1987, the Northern Twisters celebrated 30 years of dancing at their
Spring Jamboree. The Caller was Bob Fyfe from Smith,
A large number of the club ladies wore either purple dresses or purple skirts and white blouses, while the men wore purple or white shirts and matching ties for this memorable occasion. Purple and white have since become our club colors. Dancers came from all over B. C. to attend this event.
In 1989 Bob and Muriel Stewart, Art and Kay Greensill and Herb and Bernice Roberts qualified for and were given Honorary Membership. In 1990 Tom and Phyllis Pidcock became Honorary Members also. In 1990 Gys Koops became Club Caller for New Dancers and Ed England remained the Club Caller for the Intermediates. Gys had been Assistant Club Caller under Ed England for a couple of years.
Also in 1990, the Whyte’s &
Paulson’s made the Club Doll to be taken to the 1990 National
Convention. In addition Paulson’s made a Club History “stand up board”
for the Convention. Terry Whyte made the Club a new Banner of Purple and
White. We still have the original Banner that is Black like our name
badges. Also, the Whyte’s made a large sign, which is still displayed at
the Columbus Community Hall on Domano Blvd., that says this is the” home
of the Northern Twisters Square Dance Club.” Sign was taken down in
2001-2002 dance season. We are now dancing at
In 1990 Joyce Whyte and Pat Paulson decided the Club needed a Mascot. They purchased Mr. Pee Gee Jr. who is “too young to travel by himself”, so a couple of years later Ellen Jameson found him a Square Dance partner. Both travel with Bill & Ellen Jameson to all Square Dance events.
Eugene Nesbit, being a woodcrafter, started to make gifts as door prizes and for Callers as a personal memento from the club.
In the fall of 1992, the Northern Twisters started a PLUS group with
Verne & Sue Thompson as the Caller and Cuer. In 1993 Ed and Norma
England retired, after 21 years of calling for Ed and 9 years of
cueing for Norma. The Caller at our Jamboree was Phil Hansen from
In the fall of 1993, Verne and Sue Thompson became the Mainstream club
Caller and Cuer. Early
in the 1995 Dance Season Plus sponsorship by the club ceased - not
enough dancers to cover the costs. Festival ‘95 was held in
In the l996-1997 Dance Season, Gys Koops is New Dancers Caller with
Maurice Mingay assisting on Thursdays, Club is dancing at
In the 1997-1998 Dance Season we lost one of our Lifetime Members
who had been square dancing since he was a teenager. Ann Bellamy is
still an active member in the club. Main Stream dancing still at the
Columbus Community Centre Starting this season at
to 9:30.The club decided to teach the New Dancers two nights a week
instead of one and put them through the program faster. First group of
10 dancers graduated in December. In January we had 21 people sign up
for the classes with Gys Koops calling, they graduated in April. Dancing
was on Mondays and Thursday at
In the 1998-1999 Dance Season President Couple are Don Hollis and Marita
Hauost to which we owe so much for all they do. We had 15 New Dancers
taught by Gys Koops. New Dancers is still Monday and Thursday at
In the 1999-2000 Dance Season Nick and Mary Anne Turner started writing
the Cariboo Connection, a comprehensive collection of square dance
activities in region five. Pat Paulson was made official Club Historian
and given a dangle to wear with her badge. We had 7 New Dancers graduate
this year. New Dancers are still dancing at
In the 2000-2001 Dance Season the big event was Convention 2000 in
In the 200l-2002 Dance Season we changed Mainstream and Rounds to
Wednesday and are dancing at
In the 2002-2003 Dance Season we changed the dancing to Mondays at St. Michael’s Anglican Church at the corner of 5th and Victoria for mainstream and rounds .We have 6 New Dancers this year dancing on a Thursday night. This is a much better floor and a level access from the street.
In the 2003-2004 Dance Season we changed the dancing to Tuesday’s at St.
Michael’s Anglican Church at the corner of 5th and Victoria
for mainstream and rounds. Thursday Night is New Dancers (we have 11 new
dancers) also held here are SNOWFLAKE AND ROBBIE BURNS our special
dances will be held here also. Our Spring Fling Dance with Jerry will be
held up at the Senior Centre on the
In the 2004-2005 Dance Season we changed dancing back to Monday’s. Verne and Sue have moved to Creston. Gys Koops and Larry Mann are our club callers and Gary Dean is our Club cuer. New Dancers and Main Stream are both on Mondays New Dancers starting at and Main Stream starting at . We have 8 New Dancers this year. We graduated three. At the Spring Fling Jamboree Gary and Barb Dean and Ab McQuillan were given Honorary Membership. On a sad note- we lost Marita Hausot in the summer.
Season 2005 – 2006 We graduated four new dancers. We also welcomed back Paul and Cheryl Straub and Bruce and Wendy Thiel and Don and Melita Higgins. Changed New Dancers time to to and Mainstream on Mondays. Coming up in the year 2006-2007 will be the clubs 50th Anniversary. We are dancing 3 to 4 squares a night on Mondays..
Season 2006-2007 We have 4 new dancers. We are dancing 2 to 3 squares for Main Stream. We are looking forward to celebrate Northern Twisters 50th Anniversary. Carrie Van De Vosse (our President) has had a special 50th Committee formed chaired by Don Hollis for this occasion. On a sad note: we lost Herb Roberts a lifetime member of the club in November. Mike & Lorraine Pohynayko have been dancing 50 years they joined a club down south in 1957. Also our Life Time Members Tom and Phyllis Pidcock have also been dancing over 50 years. GYS AND LYNN KOOPS were presented with their 25 year pin.
Season 2007-2008 We have 13 new dancers.. Dancing 5 or 6 squares a night
Loss a Lifetime Member
MURIEL STEWART and Quesnel caller
B. C. Federation passed a motion
to form a club (group) called “THE
have 10 new Dancers. Dancing 4 or 5 squares a night.
It was decided this year that for
25 Honorary Member that CLUB pays all but
Special Dances, Insurance, Society and Federation Dues..
At our Snowflake Dance we gave
and More Badges to
Irene Rigler, Norma
England, Marvin McKinnon. We graduated 8 of the new Dancers.
All the New Dancers that graduated in 2007-2008 came back as
Angels this year. At our
Spring Fling Jamboree we gave
and More Badges.
Season 2009-2010 We have 12 new Dancers and dancing 4 or 5 squares every
Monday night. Region 5 will once again hold Festival 2011 in
Season 2010-2011 We have 11 New Dancers and dancing 5 or 6 squares every
Monday night. We gave Four Score
and More Badge to Don Higgins
at our Snow
Flake Dance. Lorne Smith called our Spring Fling to
squares. Festival 2011 was cancelled
due to lack of dancers and callers and cuers. Gys and Larry held
a Summer Splendor Square Dance in July. Had a good turn out. Over a
Season 2011-2012 We have 9 New Dancers and dancing 4 or 5 squares every Monday night. A SAD Loss for Region 5. LARRY MANN passed away due to complications from surgery to deal with blocked arteries. Larry and Shelly have enjoyed teaching young people to square dance thro the years. Larry also called for Vanderhoof Drifting Squares. We have a young fellow Dillon Dawson interested in calling.
GysKoops (Club Caller) 964-4851
Larry Mann (Club Caller) 963-8537 (died April 2, 2012 )
25 YEAR CLUB
|25 YEAR CLUB MEMBERS||HONORARY MEMBERS|
|Year - 1||Year - 25||Names||Tom & Daphne Truefitt||1997|
|1989||2014||Maurice & Adele Mingay||Irene Rigler||1999|
|1993||2018||Don Hollis||Mary McQuillin||2001|
|1995||2020||Glenda Matthews||Ab McQuillan||2005|
|1996||2021||Mary Hunter||Gary & Barb Dean||2005|
|1997||2022||Bill Borowski||Gys & Lynn Koops||2006|
|1997||2022||Howard Ure||Lorne & Pat Paulson||2009|
|1997||2022||Carrie Van DeVosse||Eugene & Myrtle Nesbit||2013|
|1998||2023||Ken & Cindy Wolfe||retreads|
|2001||2026||Reta Gagnon||To qualify for honorary membership a member|
|2004||2029||John & Peggy Zettl||must be a paid up member for 25 years|
|2005||2030||Ben & Carol Panter|
|2005||2030||Don & Melita Higgins||retreads|
|2007||2032||Roy and Trish Nielsen|
|2007||2032||Steve & Brenda Lamaureux|
|2007||2032||Gervin & Cathy Halladay||LIFETIME MEMBERSHIP|
|2007||2032||Faith Meeks||retread||Norma England||1970|
|2007||2032||Dianne Wanless||retread||Anne Bellamy||1962|
|2008||2033||Bonnie Robertson||Kay Greensill||1964|
|2008||2033||Len Wilnechenko||Tom & Phyllis Pidcock||1965|
|2008||2033||Morry Feldstein||Jim & Mary Harrison||1997|
|2008||2033||Janice Fast||In May of 1997 at our Spring Fling we gave all of|
|2009||2034||Norman & Doreen Arnott||the above Lifetime Membership|
|2009||2034||Dennis & Penny Brawn|
|2009||2034||Wolfgang Jechow||FOUR SCORE & MORE CLUB NAMES|
|2009||2034||Krystal Leason||Norma England|
|2009||2034||Alan MacDonald||retread||Kay Greensill|
|2009||2034||Diane Souvie||retread||Tom & Phyllis Pidcock|
|2010||2035||Carli Boyden||Irene Rigler|
|2010||2035||Ray Lougheed||Myrtle Nesbit|
|2010||2035||Julie Skead||Eugene Nesbit|
|2010||2035||Cris MacDonald||Don Higgins|
|2010||2035||Allan & Debbie Nordal||Muriel Robinson|
|2010||2035||Rob Smith||Pat Sexsmith|
|2010||2035||Bruce & Fran Thorton|
|2011||2036||Emery & Geraldine Cawsey||Last Update April 2013|
|2011||2036||Neil & Susan Hunter|
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