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Dancing in line
by Andrea Tyrell
Feb 10, 2014 | 738 views | 0 0 comments | 2 2 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Contributed photo -- Dancers of all ages two-step in pairs at the Frogenaders line dancing lesson at the Lord of Mercy Lutheran Church in Sparks. The dance group offers lessons to new dancers for the Spring season, beginning today.
Contributed photo -- Dancers of all ages two-step in pairs at the Frogenaders line dancing lesson at the Lord of Mercy Lutheran Church in Sparks. The dance group offers lessons to new dancers for the Spring season, beginning today.
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"If you can move around in circles, you can square dance," said Magda Sanchez. She is the caller to Sparks' newest line dancing troupe, the Frogenaders and is hoping to introduce the dance to a new generation of two-steppers.

Sanchez began line dancing in 2008.

"I needed something to do and always wanted to learn," she said.

Two years after first learning how to dance, Sanchez took calling lessons, where she learned how to give commands to the dancers out on the floor. She became a caller and formed her own lessons, where she teaches new line dancers the rule of the dance floor.

Line dancing consist of groups of four couples, twirling around the dance floor as they trade partners.

"Line dancing is very fun," said Sanchez. "You get to meet new people and make new friends. People that line dance are the nicest people in the world in my experience."

A new session of dance lessons begins today at Lord of Mercy Lutheran Church, located at 3400 Pyramid Highway, starting at 6 p.m. The sessions calls for lessons every Monday until further notice. Each class is $5 per person and is open to those 12 years of age and older. The first two classes will be the only classes that accept novice dancers.

No prior line dance knowledge is needed for the first two drop-in classes. For those who miss out on the beginning classes, the two novice classes will be offered again in the fall.

For this upcoming season, Sanchez is hoping to attract a younger crowd to her line dancing lessons.

"A lot of people, especially young people, have negative connotation about line dancing," said Sanchez. "It was one activity that you took during gym class that no one liked and thought looked silly or embarrassing. People think this style of dancing is old-fashioned, but it's not. We have a lot of young people that come and line dance with us."

Current line dancing steps to updated country music and has modern movements intertwined with traditional steps.

While line dancing began in the United States, the fad is loved by many all over the world.

"Once you learn the steps, you can go anywhere in the world and line dance," said Sanchez. "Line dancing is huge in Europe and Japan — the best is because line dancing originated in the States, all the calling is done in English."

The line dancing community in the Truckee Meadows is large, with many groups meeting each week to practice and show off their steps. Reno hosts its own line dancing festival each year around Mother's Day weekend.

"The line dancing festival is about 60 years old," said Sanchez. "It's usually held at the Grand Sierra Resort and a ton of people turn out. You have both new dancers and old pros come out and show their stuff."

The dance group's name, the Frogenaders stems from the frog, which symbolizes the willingness to dance with youth. If a dancer is wearing a frog on their clothing, they are open to dance with a person much younger than them.

"We are a very family-friendly group," said Sanchez.

Sanchez also performs private demos for parties and corporate events. She thinks it is the best way to meet people and it is a unique form of exercising.

"Line dancing gets you moving," said Sanchez. "It's the best secret out there. It is so much fun and everyone can enjoy it."

    For more information, visit www.squaredancenevada.com or call (775) 677-1510.
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