The CYO dances over the course of a year are extremely popular activities and good learning opportunities for youth on how to dress and behave in a social setting with other middle school youth. It is also an opportunity for youth whose regular contact might be through competition to come together and become friends in a more social setting. The May CYO dance is always outdoors where we welcome next year’s 7th graders and say goodbye to the current 8th graders. This dance will number in the range of 800 to 1000 middle schoolers. It is one of the most enjoyable dances of the year and this year in particular as the kids could not have been a better group of youngsters! Special thanks to St. Matthew and Holy Redeemer for acting as the parent chaperones! Maryann & Brian Stewart and the dance team!
We enjoyed watching the pizza crew try to keep up with the dancers!
Several years ago I visited a seventh and eighth grade dance put on by a public agency to see what it looked like. I was amazed at the lack of supervision and decided there and then that we needed to put on some dances to give families a choice. We started the CYO dances at Oaks Park around 2004. Mary Jane Weigel put on the early dances and did a good job of getting them started.
Maryann and Bryan Stewart have been organizing the CYO Dances for over ten years. They do a great job of it as well. Working with seventh and eighth graders is a lot of fun as they are a very special age group. The dances are not without issues as one would expect working with this age group. The youngsters are developing into young teens who make mistakes and we view it as our mission to help them correct the mistake and learn from it.
Maryann and Bryan have raised four children of their own and have a good handle on our Catholic Christian expectations and do a great job of helping the kids. We are also thankful for the committment of our DJ Tom Farley who continues to provide outstanding DJ services. As the last dance of the year approaches this May 12, CYO will say goodbye to the 8th graders and welcome the 6th graders.
As we look to the 2017-18 Dance season, Bryan, MaryAnn and I have met and assessed our procedures to ensure that we are being faithful to our mission. Dress code will be more strictly enforced, online registration will be required and the price of the dances will increase to keep up with the costs passed along to CYO. As we finalize our plans, we will make them known to our participants and parents. We offer Catholic organizations the opportunity to do the supervision for us and in return, we pay their group $500. for their 3 hour effort. If your group is interested in chaperoning, please contact the CYO/Camp Howard office.
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