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Square dancing was adopted on June 23, 1988 as Oklahoma's State Folk Dance.
Square dancing is the American folk dance which traces its ancestry to the English country dance and the French ballroom dance. It is called, cued, or prompted to the dancers. It includes squares, rounds, clogging, contra, line, the Virginia reel, and heritage dances. When the pioneers came west, they brought with them a dance called the quadrille, which means square in French. The pioneers liked the simpler term and so the square dance was born. The dance is known for its series of figures and footwork. Dancers are directed by a caller. It is easy to learn, a good form of exercise and fun.
Senate Joint Resolution No. 111 was approved by the Oklahoma Senate on June 15, 1988 and by the Oklahoma House of Representatives on June 23, 1988. It was filed with the Secretary of State on the same day, June 23, 1988.
A Concurrent Resolution relating to proclaiming the square dance
as the official state folk dance.
WHEREAS, square dancing has been a popular form of entertainment since before statehood and modern square dancing as we know it has been flourishing across the State of Oklahoma the mid-40's; and, square dancing is truly the American dance developing in this country as the country itself was progressing and moving west; and
WHEREAS, though the history of square dancing has gone largely unrecorded, it began as it is today a fun folk dance whose ancestry can be traced to four principal sources; the calling and the timing came from the New England Quadrille, the vigor and the fun came from the Kentucky Running Set, several of the steps can be traced to Mexico and many figures can be traced to European Folk Dances; and
WHEREAS, square dancing has been a popular form of entertainment since before statehood and modern square dancing as we know it has been flourishing across the State of Oklahoma the mid-40's; and
WHEREAS, due to the growing popularity of square dancing a state federation was formed in 1947 to encourage and develop the art of square dancing and the members of this group divided the state into nine districts governing the many square dance clubs across the State of Oklahoma; and
WHEREAS, we think of square dancing as a popular local activity, there are square dancing federations in every state in the nation as well as the District of Columbia, Canada, Mexico, Europe and Asia [and] for the past 37 years these dancing enthusiasts have joined together during the National Square Dance Convention; and
WHEREAS, the State of Oklahoma has been fortunate enough to host the National Square Dance Conventions in 1955 and 1978 and will once again proudly host the 38th National Square Dance Convention in 1989; and
WHEREAS, this national convention will be held in the Oklahoma City Myriad Convention Center, will bring over 30,000 participants and visitors to the Great State of Oklahoma and is expected to generate approximately $18 million in revenue for the Oklahoma City area; and
WHEREAS, many Oklahomans have worked long and hard to have the opportunity to bring the National Convention to Oklahoma City next year and play host to so many square dance lovers showing them the fine down-home hospitality for which Oklahoma is well-known and in recognition for their efforts and to show our appreciation for the colorful and exciting entertainment Oklahoma square dancers provide for all Oklahomans we proudly proclaim the Square Dance as Oklahoma's Official State Folk Dance.
Now, Therefore, be it resolved by the Senate of the 2nd Session of the 41st Oklahoma Legislature, the House of Representatives concurring therein:
THAT the Oklahoma State Legislature hereby proclaims the Square Dance as the Official State Folk Dance of the State of Oklahoma.
Adopted by the Senate the 15th day of June, 1988.
Adopted by the House of Representatives the 23rd day of June, 1988.
Filed with the Secretary of State June 23, 1988.