Emerald city

(last updated June 15, 2024)

Emerald City Contra Dance

with the Seattle Folklore Society present

Contra dancing nearly every Friday at the

Phinney Neighborhood Center

6532 Phinney Avenue North, Seattle (98103)


in the Community Hall of the brick building, near the lower parking lot

Beginner’s workshop at 7:00 pm (or thereabouts). Dance from 7:30 pm to 10:00 pm.

We no longer require masks while dancing – however, we still encourage you to wear them if you can.   We still require you to sign a registration form (for contact tracing) and waiver upon entry.   If you have attended a dance elsewhere, you’ll still need register at this dance as well.

We also recommend that you keep up-to-date with vaccinations.  We may reinstate mask and vaccination requirements at a later date, if  COVID conditions change or we receive more reports of illness within the community.  As always, we suggest you check Public Health – Seattle & King County for more information about COVID.  For information about community-level transmission in King County, check here.  For information about COVID practices and cases from earlier dances, check here.

Admission prices (cash, check or Venmo only):
– Sliding scale $10-$20.
– Students $5 with a school ID.
– Free for people under the age of 16.

Admission limited to 125 people. This total includes paying & non-paying dancers, musicians, callers, children, and adults acting like children. (In short, everyone.)

If this is your first contra dance ever you’ll get a coupon for free admission to your next dance.
Coupon redemption limited to first five coupons on any single night.

Follow us on Facebook. There’s a Lost and Found “Featured” file on that page where you can find items that you left behind at the dance.


Please help the PNA achieve their sustainability goals. Consider carpooling, walking, biking, or riding the bus to the dance. If you drive, please park in the PNA parking lots.

The upper parking lot will be closed for the Phinney Farmer’s Market on Fridays, from June 7 through September 27.  The market is open from 3:00-7:00 pm. Come early and enjoy the market before the dance.

All dances taught. No partner necessary.
Light, comfortable clothing recommended.
Please join us without perfumes, colognes, aftershave, scented lotions, etc.


More information for dancers.
Information for bands and callers.
Past caller set lists.
Bands and callers: we’ll have an online booking form available soon.

For information not already posted here: 206-440-9839 or EmeraldCityContra@pobox.com

Enough of the suggestions, disclaimers, and notifications. Here is what you really want to know…

Schedule of bands and callers:

Callers will use the terms “larks” and “robins” for dance roles.

  • June 14  Bandwidth brings together three of Portland’s contra dance music veterans, Gordy Euler (fiddle, whistle, piano), Keith Moe (fiddle), and Carl Thor (piano, mandolin). Be ready for an exciting, full spectrum of contra dance music when these gents take to the stage. They’re having fun up there, and it shows! Joe Micheals calls.
  • June 21  Veterans of the band Jigsaw, George Penk (fiddle) and Heather Pinney (piano, fiddle), have paired together with Jesse Schafer on cello/guitar and gone feral.  Their new band, Peter and the Wolf Tones, meld the lyrical and driven with occasional songs to power the dance.  Amy Wimmer calls.
  • June 28  The Sage Thrashers are Hayden Stern on fiddle, Patrick Gunning on guitar, and Jesse Partridge on fiddle as well.  Eric Curl calls.
  • July 5  Corwin & Grace is a London-based duo that plays traditional Irish, Scottish and old English tunes. They bring an evening of fiery fiddlin’ and foot stompin’ piano and play with a passion that will get you up and dancing!  Koren Wake calls.
  • July 12  Dale Russ and Nell Russ-Cohen on fiddles, and Suzanne Taylor on piano and wooden flute play traditional Irish music for contras. Dale has been playing Irish fiddle for contras since the 1970s and is known for his uncanny tune selections to fit the dances. Nell fell in love with Irish music and joined the community about 10 years ago. She is honored to study with Dale and draw on his vast knowledge and experience of Irish music and playing for dances — just what the tunes were meant for!  They’ll be joined by Suzanne Taylor, who grew up immersed in folk and bluegrass music and discovered Irish music while in Brittany over 20 years ago. She’s been a stalwart of the traditional Irish music community ever since. Though the trio have played together for years, this is their inaugural contra as a group — check out their fresh energy and enthusiasm!  Elisabeth Monica calls.
  • July 19  Anita Anderson on piano,  Hayden Stern on fiddle, & Elise Snoey on fiddle.  Kelsey Hartman calls.
  • July 26  Rufous! Meet Manda Brown, fiddling, with Melissa Coffey on winds and fiddle, and Nick Leininger, strumming like heck on his vintage Ovation guitar, to give dancers a great beat. Victoria Fox calls tasty dances on our first outing. 
  • August 2  Marni Rachmiel & friends.
  • August 9  Countercurrent – Brian Lindsey on fiddle & banjo;  Alex Sturbaum on guitar & accordion. This powerhouse acoustic duo  features fiddle, guitar, harmony vocals, and foot percussion. When dancers and listeners experience the blend of lyrical melodies, groovy chords, thumping percussion, and vocal harmonies all simultaneously, the reaction is invariably “How does so much music come from just two people?!”
  • August 16 RiffRaff is Lindon Toney – fiddle; Evo Sokoloff-Toney – fiddle; Dante Faulk – cello & drum; Jesse Partridge – piano. 
  • August 23 Hayden Stern & Patrick Gunning.