Remembering EmBe’s Spinsters dance

Local News

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — A dance that has been held in Sioux Falls since the 1930s has come to an end.

It’s been more than 10 years since Megan Van Holland attended EmBe’s Spinsters dance, but the event still remains as a special memory.

“It was really a community gathering that just was a night of fun and it was the whole dancing, the dresses, the hair, the dinner, the whole shebang,” Van Holand said.

Van Holland has gone from attending the dance, to helping coordinate it as Embe’s marketing manager.

“Spinsters started in the 1930s and this was a time when Sadie Hawkins dances were sort of coming into popularity. And that was a time when girls would invite boys to dances kind of generally speaking. So I think about the 1930s and where my grandmothers would have been at that time. And certainly, that would have been kind of shaking things up a little and different from the way we see things today,” Jennifer Hoesing said.

Also different from today’s dances is the use of dance cards, something Jennifer Hoesing says most high school students now have never heard of.

“You would have like your little notebook and your list and you would polka and you would Foxtrot and you would two-step and you would fill in who you danced with in each of those styles of dance,” Hoesing said.

But now EmBe is moving forward, leaving Spinsters as only a memory for those lucky enough to attend.

“It’s EmBe’s 100th anniversary and we’ve just been spending a lot of time really thinking about building on our legacy and where we head in the future. And we’re pursuing a new strategic plan,” Hoesing said.

EmBe is hoping to reach new goals this year, including serving middle and high school girls in different ways.

But as they say goodbye to Spinsters, they hope everyone will remember the impact it had on so many.

“I think that Spinsters has been around and It has obviously been this huge legacy dance, but now is the time for especially a new change and figuring out what may better serve and come at a better program than maybe a dance,” Van Holland said.

EmBe also plans to focus on their youth development programs including Girls On The Run as they move forward.

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