Seligman Chamber hosts night of family-friendly entertainment

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Chamber offers community dance, meal for families

For anyone looking for some fun, family-friendly entertainment Saturday evenings, the Seligman Chamber of Commerce has just the thing.

For only $4, residents can enjoy a potluck-style meal, music, and even a little exercise, as every Saturday night beginning at 7 p.m., the chamber hosts a community dance.

It doesn't matter if an attendee is single, married, younger, older, have two left feet, or prefer to be a wall flower anyone is welcome.

"Everybody's welcome to come," said Cleta Stanley, secretary for the chamber. "It's not required to bring a food item, but anyone who wants to can bring a covered dish, snack or dessert at 7 p.m. We have some who bring crock pots, and some, potato chips. We have a good variety of everything."

The band takes a break at 8 p.m. for everyone to eat, then plays until 10 p.m.

Door prizes are also given away during the night, along with two free passes to get into the next dance. Youth ages 18 and under get in free.

To keep the night family-friendly and in a healthy environment, no alcohol or smoking is allowed.

The event, which is held at the Seligman Chamber of Commerce Event Center (also known as the community center) on Highway 37, is quite popular, not only with locals but those from surrounding areas, Stanley said.

"Last Saturday, we had 111 people, and three weeks ago, 137," she said. "And, we have a lot that come from Oklahoma, Arkansas, Joplin, Neosho, Purdy, and as far as Springdale, Harrison, and Bella Vista, Ark.

Teenagers think it's pretty groovy, too.

"We had 12 teenagers Saturday night," Stanley said. "We'd rather have kids there than on the street."

The event, which the chamber has been hosting for about five years with all proceeds returned to the chamber to support its work in the community, is also for a great cause.

"People used to go to dances in Stella or Berryville, Ark., so when we got the community center, we could finally have a building to hold dances," Stanley said. "We try to help businesses grow, get more businesses to come to town, and more activities to bring people into town, like the dances and our train rides. It's all volunteer, and all the money goes to the chamber."

Different bands perform at the event, including Three Hits and a Miss, Classic Country and Cheyenne, and play mostly country-western style music.

"All of our bands are really good," Stanley said.

In addition to straight dancing, there are other fun activities mixed in, too.

"We have the Waterfall, where we have men on one side, and women on the other, and when they meet in the middle and they dance with whoever they come up to," Stanley said. "We also have a light dance, where you can pick whoever you want to dance with. You put a dollar in the pot, and if you've got a light, you get to dance with a lady. Everyone switches around and gets to dance so it helps people mix and mingle. Some dances, like in Monett, do the same thing, but use little flags instead. We'll also have Ladies' Night and a Sock Hop sometimes."

About eight individuals oversee chamber activities, with Stanley serving as secretary, David VanPetty as president, and Neal Stanley as vice president.

Stanley extended an open invitation to families to come check out the event and enjoy a meal and evening of entertainment.

"We have a real good time," she said. "It's a lot of fun."

For more information, people may call the chamber at 417-662-3612.

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