August 13 - 20, 2017
We have a very special camp at Timber Ridge. The unique combination of an adult dance camp with a family camp gives us the best of both. We have the sweetness of family camp traditions like the Pied Piper, and we have the energy of an army of teenagers, but we also have the skill and grace of long-time dancers. Parents, grandparents, singles, couples, young adults, teenagers, and young children all come together in a joyous mix of dance and song. And art. And swimming. And connecting with friends (old and new). And games and canoeing. And late night activities that always include food.
Our dance callers this year are Adina Gordon from Burlington, VT and Erik Weberg of Portland, OR. Each of these callers is highly skilled at calling both American contra dances and English country dances. We will have a wonderful mix of dances every day of camp this summer.
We are lucky to have New England Dancing Master Andy Davis at camp again this year. He will lead community dances to start each camp gathering and he will coordinate the storytellers each evening.
Our teens will come together each day with cousins Ellie Grace and Kelly Bosworth. These young women will lead singing, dancing, body percussion, songwriting, and a few off-the-wall activities. Ellie says, “teenagers are my jam.” They are our jam, too!
New this year: an official camper-led activity time after lunch. In the past these unofficial activities have included shape-note singing, community art projects, acro yoga, juggling, etc. Now that there is an official time slot for this, who knows what our campers will bring? Also new this year will be an optional afternoon class for kids led by former camp kid Imogen Mills.
The musicians this year are a delightful mix of our long-time favorites (Steve Hickman, John Devine, Dave Wiesler, Ralph Gordon) and some newer friends (Paul Prestopino, Audrey Knuth, Daniel Beerbohm, Chris Ousley and Jess Eliot Myhre).
~ Janet, Robert, Imogen, Cecily Mills, Program Co-Directors
|9:00-10:00||Kids can be dropped off at their class at 8:55|
|(2-3)||Songs Stories and Nature||Leslie Jeanne Devine Milbourne|
|(4-6)||Art Meets Song||Robin Davis|
|(7-9)||Movin' and Groovin' with Music and More||DeLaura Padovan|
|(10-12)||Dance Song and Story||Andy Davis|
|(13-17)||Teen Class||Ellie Grace, Kelly Bosworth|
|(18 & up)||Dances in the Playhouse w/Adina||Adina Gordon|
|(18 & up)||Experienced English Country Dance||Erik Weberg|
|10:15-11:15||Teacher will pick up children at snack and bring them back to Gathering after class|
|(2-3)||Musical Explorations||DeLaura Padovan|
|(4-6)||Mystery Box, Songs, and Nature||Leslie Jeanne Devine Milbourne|
|(7-9)||Let’s Put on a Show!||Andy Davis|
|(10-12)||Singing and Such||Kelly Bosworth|
|(13 & up)||Experienced American Dance||Adina Gordon|
|(13 & up)||Dances in the Playhouse w/Erik||Erik Weberg|
|11:30-12:25||All Camp Gathering with dances, songs, and other fun|
|(All ages, under 10 w/parent)||Swimming in the Pool|
|(All ages, under 10 w/parent)||Nature Walk||Leslie Jeanne Devine Milbourne|
|(All ages)||Camper Led Activities|
|(All ages, under 8 w/parent)||Calder's Delight||Leslie Sudock, DeLaura Padovan|
|(12 & up, 9-11 w/parent)||Couple Dancing||Ellie Grace|
|(6 & up)||Optional Kids class||Imogen Mills|
|4:00-5:00||All ages, under 10 w/parent Swimming in the Pool|
|4:00-5:15||Canoeing in the River|
|(13 & up)||Border Morris||Adina Gordon|
|(10 & up)||Singing with Kelly & Ellie||Ellie Grace, Kelly Bosworth|
|(10 & up)||Community Band||Chris Ousley, Jess Eliot Myhre|
|5:15-5:45||Sing for Your Supper|
|7:35||All Camp Gathering|
|8:15||Pied Piper/Bedtime for children 9 & younger|
|8:30-11:00||Evening Dance Party|
|9:30||Bedtime for 10-12 year olds|
The Mills family first came to this family camp in the year 2000, and fell in love. Having experienced camp from many different positions, they are all excited to get behind the wheel as program directors. As a family, they enjoy playing music together, dancing together, and singing together. They occasionally play string quartets, and they also occasionally play for contra dances under the name “Contrapositive.” As individuals, each brings a unique set of interests and skills to camp each Summer. Janet Mills is the mother and chief logistical strategist. She teaches elementary music, and enjoys a good book. She plays an impressive number of instruments at the fifth grade level, but she specializes in fiddle and viola. Robert Mills is the father and official piano accompanist of the family. He also plays accordion, fiddle, and viola. He enjoys English dancing, and has just started calling. He appreciates a funny joke and a good Beethoven Sonata. Imogen Mills is the older daughter, and punctuality manager. She is studying to be a music teacher at Ithaca College. She enjoys contra dancing, English dancing, and couples dancing. She loves to sing, play fiddle, and play the piano. She is also learning guitar. Cecily Mills is the younger daughter and head writer for the family. She enjoys English, contra, couples, and even Morris dancing. She is attending the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She sings and plays marimba, guitar, uke, and cello. The Mills family hopes to create a fun and inclusive environment at camp this year, and they are looking forward to seeing you there.
Daniel Beerbohm, on clarinet, flute and penny whistle, spices his English and contra dance playing from a rich background of swing, Klezmer and classical music. He performs extensively with Hold The Mustard, A Joyful Noise, and Reunion, at dances along the East coast and occasionally westward.
Kelly Bosworth is a singer, a songwriter, an obsessive harmonizer, a guitar player, and music teacher. Although she hails from the coolest town in the world - Portland, Oregon - she currently resides in another pretty cool place: Bloomington, Indiana. She is working towards a graduate degree in Ethnomusicology at Indiana University and she studies the complex intertangling mess of music, community, emotion, and identity.
Andy Davis is a music educator in three Vermont public schools, dance musician, caller, storyteller and singer. Andy plays piano, accordion and banjo. He leads community contra and square dances, performs with Nowell Sing We Clear, and is a member of the New England Dancing Masters - publishers of books and recordings for teachers of traditional dance.
Robin Davis has been participating in community folk music and dance activities much of her life, including healthy doses of Cotswold and Northwest clog morris. A retired professional baker, Robin now teaches preschool. She enjoys gathering children and adults together to DO ART, such as modular origami, Ukranian egg dying, bookbinding, printing and paper collage. She sings with the River Singers, a large multi-cultural choir, and a hospice singing group called Hallowell. She has led children's classes at Pinewoods, Ogontz and Lady of the Lake family weeks.
John Devine is much loved by the Family Week community as the Pied Piper and as a solid mountain of rhythm guitar for all styles of country dancing from English to New England to Southern, with a not-so-secret leaning toward swing songs and joy. He has one of the most beautiful voices you'll ever hear. He brings a gentle power to all that he does, whether playing guitar, singing songs or tending his farm just over the ridge in northeast West Virginia.
Leslie Jeanne Devine Milbourne
Leslie Jeanne Devine Milbourne is our Earth Educator and Nature Goddess and an environmental educator who relishes exploring, discovering and learning how the earth works, and helping others discover the natural beauty around us. She has worked extensively in her field for over 15 years with preschoolers through college students. We are never separate from nature; Leslie helps us to open our senses to the world in which we live. With daughter, Chenaya, and husband, John Devine, she lives just down the road from Timber Ridge Camp where she and John operate their own nature and music camp.
Adina Gordon finds an outlet for her loves of travel, music, dance and silliness by calling and dancing at festivals throughout the U.S. and Canada, creating joy and minor chaos wherever she goes. Combining a voice that makes you WANT to do what she says with a commitment to using that power for good and not evil, Adina calls contras and squares both old and new that cause spontaneous eruptions of joy on dance floors. She counts it as a job well done whenever anyone says, "I don't really like squares, but I like your squares."
Ralph Gordon is a uniquely versatile musician, bringing more than 45 years of musical experience to the bass and cello. He is equally at home in folk, old time, swing, jazz, blues, bluegrass, klezmer, chamber group settings and all styles of music for dancers. Ralph, classically trained, studied music at West Virginia University and the Manhattan School of Music. He left Manhattan to perform with the New Jersey Symphony, then toured with Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians. He eventually returned to West Virginia where he joined the ground breaking folk ensemble, Trapezoid. Nine years and four recordings later he left the group in 1986 to become a free-lance musician. He toured with Freyda and Acoustic Attatude and has been a member of Childsplay for 20 years. Ralph has performed with many individuals and groups in a multitude of musical styles and settings from weddings and special events to Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, Blues Alley and Strathmore Hall. Ralph has played at festivals across the country and venues around the world. He is a sought after freelance artist and session musician in the Washington/Baltimore metropolitan area. He can be heard on many recordings, often contributing to arranging and producing. He teaches bass and performance classes at summer and weekend camps across the country.
Ellie Grace was born into a deep musical tradition and began her life-long love affair with Appalachian clogging at the ripe old age of five. She has spent her life performing professionally as a singer, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, and dancer, first as a young member of her family band and now as an independent artist. She has toured internationally with her sister duo (Leela & Ellie Grace), the Dirk Powell Band, the all-female old-time trio Blue Eyed Girl, and several percussive dance companies. Ellie is a passionate and dynamic teacher, having taught at camps, schools, and festivals across the country for well over twenty years. In May of 2015, Ellie will be the first Appalachian clogger to graduate from Smith College in Northampton, MA with an MFA in Dance. Whether she is performing for an audience of thousands or teaching one on one, it is apparent the joy she takes in sharing her love of dance and music with people of all ages!
Steve Hickman is a world class fiddler, a master hambonist, a passionate historian, and an organic homesteader, specializing in wild blueberries and Shiitake mushroom production. Since the 1970s, he has been the backbone of untold numbers of mid-Atlantic dance bands and has taught hambone to several generations of Family Week campers. He has toured internationally with groups including Childsplay.
Hailing from Honolulu, Audrey Knuth moved to Boston in 2008 to attend Berklee College of Music and to explore the thriving New England folk scene. After graduating, Audrey has made a name for herself in the music community, as a dance fiddler and audio engineer. With her bands, The Free Raisins, The Gaslight Tinkers and Audacious (with Larry Unger), she has travelled across the U.S. playing for dances and concerts. She’s equally adept at teaching workshops, and has been on staff at the renowned Pinewoods Music Camp among others. Audrey’s fiddle playing can be described as rhythmically lively; she's guaranteed to get you up and dancing.
Alexander Mitchell, Berklee College of Music graduate, is an acoustic multi-instrumentalist who plays fiddle, mandolin, guitar and has an amazing singing voice! Alexander started playing fiddle in 1978 after hearing bluegrass music. Since then he has been cultivating such diverse styles as Appalachian, bluegrass, Celtic, Klezmer, traditional roots dance music, ballroom, sizzling hot swing and jazz.
Jess Eliot Myhre
Jess is an American roots musician, drawing influences from early rural and urban sounds across the board. She performs swing and blues music on clarinet and voice, and likes to thump along to old time, bluegrass, and country on upright bass and guitar. A native Floridian, Jess grew up singing in church and swinging from banyan trees. After performing in hip hop and funk bands at Wesleyan University, she moved to New Orleans and became mesmerized by the big, uproarious glory of the old sounds of the street bands and second lines. She dusted off her lonely old clarinet, built herself her iconic frog washboard, and turned a 180 towards the traditional. She now performs all over this big country, playing American Roots music in performance halls, swing dances, contra dances, square dances, house concerts, and busking in your city's streets.
A Maryland boy, Chris tramped off to the hills of western Pennsylvania to study books and banjos. There he woodshedded with old hill cats in barns outside of abandoned steel and coal towns playing any instrument he could take a turn on. Hitting mountain trails, biking over rough terrain, and rafting down rivers, all with a banjo on his back. Chris’s deep jazz pocket and graceful Kentucky-style banjo are only outmatched by the snarlyness of his beard.
For twenty years DeLaura Padovan has been honored to share her enthusiasm and joy at Family Weeks. She is a family dance leader, singer and organic farmer. A pioneer of living life the best way possible, DeLaura spends her time homeschooling two teenage daughters, playing ukulele and marimba, milking goats and creating one thing out of another. DeLaura is a dedicated local foods activist in the King George, Virginia region.
Paul Prestopino plays all the fretted instruments, plus harmonicas and the occasional recorder. He began his professional musical career in 1961 as accompanist with the Chad Mitchell Trio, played behind Peter, Paul & Mary for fifteen years, and has recorded with numerous folk, pop, and rock-and-roll artists. He currently divides his time between work as a designer/builder/maintainer of pro audio equipment, backing up various folk musicians, and playing for contra and English country dances. Paul has played with Hold The Mustard since its formation in 1980.
Leslie Sudock has made community-building a way of life in all her endeavors as a public interest attorney, musician, artist and neighbor. A trained musicologist and early music specialist (voice and viol), Leslie’s musical life included performance as a professional orchestral choral singer with the Philadelphia Orchestra, ensemble soloist, and voice teacher. An exhibited textile artist, Leslie makes community art a way of life through textile, printmaking and “eco-art” instruction in Philadelphia’s schools, park recreations centers, and in her own community studio, Ready to Hand, where she specializes in teaching improvisational SAORI weaving and related textile arts. She has led numerous CDSS community quilt projects, and her all-camp indigo dyeing and weaving projects have inspired campers of all ages annually. Leslie and her family have attended CDSS family camps at Kinder Ring, Pinewoods, Buffalo Gap and Timber Ridge for two decades. She lives in Philadelphia with her sometime Morris-dancer Dan Drecksage and large “granddogs” Sadie and Solo.
Erik Weberg has called dances and festivals around the country from Seattle to Boston, from Fairbanks to Tucson and most places between. Equally adept at contra and English calling, Erik chooses dances that are tailor-made for the occasion at hand, matching the dances to experience level of the crowd and providing a wealth of variety in the program. Erik’s ability to connect with dancers and his sly sense of humor insure an upbeat, congenial atmosphere on the floor as well as a terrific dance experience. This combination of attributes explains why he is in continual demand as a caller at week end and week-long dance camps as well as a favorite on Friday and Saturday nights in his home base, Portland, OR. Erik is also involved with the musical end of the dance world. He plays flute, harmonicas, bombardes (yes, plural), and Scottish small pipes.
Dave Wiesler began his musical journey as “the guy who could figure out the chords” in his high school garage band. Nearly 20 years later he discovered playing folk music for dances, and felt that the job description had been written just for him. At home in a wide range of styles, Dave is in demand for contra, English and Scottish country dancing, swing, waltz and vintage dance; and his music has taken him across the country and into Canada, Scotland, England, France and the Galapagos Islands. Dave is a prolific composer of tunes and songs, and is also a capable guitarist and singer. He lives in Newark, DE, with his wife and two young sons who don't let him practice nearly as much as he'd like.
ABOUT TIMBER RIDGE CAMP
Timber Ridge Camp spreads across and down a gentle slope that levels out into playing fields bounded by a sweeping bend in the Cacapon River. The camp is in the foothills of the Appalachians near Winchester, VA, and is easily accessible from the mid-Atlantic, the South and the Midwest.
Across the valley and the river is a forested ridge to the west and hills and fields to the north. Timber Ridge is a large camp with many buildings and generous facilities. You'll find a swimming pool and gym, a Fine Arts complex with various program spaces, a pub/canteen, fields for soccer and other games, a large indoor dining hall with a nearby outdoor picnic area, tennis courts, wonderful swimming spots on the river, canoes and many kinds of housing options.
There is ample space for dance classes, which will be held in the Playhouse, the Rec Hall and the gym. The Fine Arts complex (comprised of the adjoining Playhouse -- air-conditioned -- and Rec Hall) offers wonderful settings for after-dance parties. There are several discrete rooms so that a jam session can carry on without affecting a singing session, ceilidh dance or games and conversation. The pub/canteen is a space that invites gatherings and the site of choice for cabaret and honky-tonk parties.
With excellent playing fields, the river with its canoes, the pool with its beach chairs, and extensive porches on various buildings, there are many opportunities for both quiet and more active pastimes.
The program begins with swimming and an informal tour of camp on the afternoon of the first day; followed by an orientation meeting and dance after dinner.
Arrival time is after 3:30pm on the starting Sunday. Departure time is by 10:00am the final Sunday.
You will need to bring a flashlight to find your way around at night. A battery powered or wind up alarm clock and insect repellent may be useful. If you are on a special diet, you may need to bring your own particular food. An ice chest for drinks and snacks to share at after-dance parties may be handy. A specific packing list is sent with acceptance information.
Don't forget to pack your your swimsuit, raincoat, sweater, towels, bed linen, and blankets or a sleeping bag and pillows. A fan is often welcome.
The nearest stores are a 15-30 minute drive away.
All participants are assigned on-site housing in the month before camp starts. Space is limited; we can't guarantee that all specific requests will be filled. Requests may be made on the Registration Form or with information sent later.
Adult housing is mostly in double rooms (with private or semi-private baths) within larger buildings. Family housing is in bunkrooms with one family per room, sharing bath facilities with one other family, or, for smaller families with younger children, in the Lodge -- a building with several smaller rooms. Family housing is based on the age of the youngest family member.
General housing categories at Timber Ridge are:
- Quiet or party areas
- Closer to or further from evening activities
- Specific building
Summer nights can be hot and humid; consider bringing a small, quiet fan to place near your bed.
In the cooperative spirit of camp life, all campers have a daily job to help camp run smoothly.
Jobs are usually a half hour or less per day, every day, and the same job all week. Jobs are assigned in the month before camp starts; you have the opportunity make specific requests about your job assignment either on the Registration Form or later with your Registration Status Form.
We can't guarantee that all specific job requests will be filled, but please let us know if you have a preference or limitation (e.g., dust allergy, unable to lift heavy objects, can't stay up late, can't get up for breakfast).
At family sessions parents are generally assigned a job with their young children.
General job categories are:
- Dining room: breakfast, lunch or dinner (set/clear tables)
- Kitchen (serve food, clear, wash dishes, make coffee/tea)
- Sweeping (pavilions, community areas)
- Party help (late night party setup/cleanup)
- Clerical (office, bookstore, auction)
- Greeters (must be able to arrive by 2:00pm)
- Gopher (campstore, auction, lifting)
PHONE & COMPUTERS
Though your plate will be full with activities while at camp, for those of you who must keep in contact with work or home, there are options. There is first class mail and UPS service. We do ask that laptops and cell phones be kept out of the awareness of other campers. Even if you can't, others want to enjoy this time away from the reminders of work-a-day living.There is a touch-tone phone for camper use; you will need a calling card to make long distance calls. Cell coverage is spotty at best.
DEPOSITS AND PAYMENTS
Online payments can be made with Mastercard or VISA. We can only take the amount you approve, so balance payments need to be initiated by you.
Mailed-in registrations can be paid by Mastercard, VISA or by check, made payable to CDSS, in U.S. Funds. Mail to CDSS, 116 Pleasant St Suite 345, Easthampton, MA 01027
A deposit of $150/person/week, if not paying full amount, is needed with registration.
Full cost depends on the Week and, at family programs, the ages of children.
Full payment for sessions starting before August 1: due May 20
Full payment for sessions starting on or after August 1: due June 20
There is a fee of $25 on any late payment.
Deposits/payments are processed upon receipt. In the case of cancellation from the wait list or from a session, a refund will be issued as per our cancellation policy.
Registration can be completed online or Registration Form (pdf) may be mailed, hand-delivered, e-mailed or faxed to the CDSS office. Registration confirmation and status will be sent out after April 1. If you wish confirmation that we received your application, please send a stamped, self-addressed postcard or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We offer work scholarships to any camper in need, and named scholarships to practicing teachers, leaders and musicians. Please read about our scholarship programs before applying. Scholarship applications will be considered at the time of registration and should therefore accompany the Registration Form.
Donation in support of Scholarships are needed and gratefully accepted. If you are able to help another person benefit from our programs, you can do so by making a contribution along with your registration or at our online store. In addition, at each week of our summer camps, we hold auctions which raise money for future scholarships.
If you have registered and been accepted, you should have received an email from Steve Howe that includes your Registration Status Form and an attached file titled Information for Accepted Campers. The email was sent to only one email address per registration. The body of the email is the Registration Status Form; please contact us with any specific updates and corrections to that form including your contact information, housing and job requests, your meal preferences, expected arrival time and emergency contact information. Here are link to several printable bits of important information.
Acceptance Information: This should have been attached to your Registration Status Form email.
If we do not yet have your signed Waiver, please do that now.
Getting Ready: A page with some hints on life at camp.
Packing List: Suggestions of things to bring
Directions to Camp
A letter from the Program Director
August letter from the Program Director
Printable page of class descriptions
Family Bio: Please use this form or a sheet of your own design for posting at camp and the historical notebook.