Desert Spring Contra Weekend

Good to Know

April 18, 2019:   Below is the text of the ‘welcome’ email sent to everyone that has registered for the weekend.

SUBJECT:  Desert Spring Contra Weekend 2019- Info, Roster, Schedule

Dear Desert Spring Dancer,

Welcome to the Desert Spring Contra Dance Weekend in Mesa AZ! 

We can’t wait to dance with you the 4th weekend in April (the 26th –28th) at the:
   Monte Vista Resort
   8865 E. Baseline Rd.
   Mesa, AZ 85209.
The Desert Spring website is at:

Below is detailed info on Desert Spring 2019 and a suggested list of what to bring to have a great weekend:
  Talent                                     Wanted: Volunteer Help       Food               Staying Connected 
  Thurs. 4/25 Dance at ICC      Housing / Camping              BYO Cup       Last Minute Info 
  Getting to the Resort.             Schedule + Workshops         Raffle             Packing List 
  Space Available                     Clothing Exchange                Roster            Sunday After-Party

The info in this email, with updates as needed is also available on the ‘Good to Know’ page on our website, 

THE WEEKEND’S ACTIVITIES begin on Friday, April 26.
·       6:30 PM: The hall opens. 
·       7:30 – 11PM:  Dance, Dance, Dance! 
From Friday evening through Sunday afternoon, there will be plenty of contra dancing day and night in the dance hall, plus workshops for dancers and musicians will be offered during the day.

You’ll love the INCREDIBLE TALENT of two amazing bands, Drive Train and the Syncopaths. Carol Ormand and Frannie Marr will expertly guide the dancing fun. Desert Spring ends on Sunday with a dance finale from 2:00 – 4:00 PM.

THURS NIGHT DANCE:  On 4/25 come out to the Irish Cultural Center 1106 N. Central, Phx for a preview dance with Drive Train and calling by Deb Comly.  Lesson- 7, Dance- 7:30-10:30.

GETTING TO THE MONTE VISTA RESORT:  Desert Spring is being held at the at the Monte Vista Resort, 8865 E. Baseline Rd., Mesa, 85209.  The resort is on the south side of Baseline Rd, just south and east of the intersection of the Loop 202 and Rte 60 freeways.  Look for ‘Contra Dance’ signs directing you to the ballroom.

There is SPACE AVAILABLE for more dancers to join us for this exciting weekend. If you know of anyone who would delight in a weekend of music and dancing, please invite them to sign up.  Contact us if you can’t make it for the entire weekend, we should be able to work something out.

HOUSING / CAMPING:  Housing options for the weekend include nearby hotels, a State park and County park with camp sites, RV spaces with hook ups on site, and housing with a local dancer.  Check the Housing page on our website for more info.

WANTED- VOLUNTEER HELP:  We can use help before and during the weekend with a variety of things including set up and tear down.
– If you can help during the dance weekend, look for sign up sheets near the registration / welcome table.
– If you can help before Friday evening, send me a quick reply letting me know when you’re available and I’ll put you in touch with our volunteer coordinator.

SCHEDULE: The preliminary dance and workshop schedule is attached and is available on the website on the ‘Schedule and Workshops’ page. The final schedule including workshop descriptions will be posted on the website closer to the weekend, and will be posted in the hall. Limited paper copies of the schedule will also be available in the hall. You are encouraged to print a copy of the final schedule before you arrive or download it to your portable device.

WORKSHOPS:  The draft schedule currently on the website includes the preliminary list of workshops.  Descriptions for the workshops will be added soon.  Don’t forget your ukulele for the ukulele jam session.

FOOD: Healthy, delicious, and plentiful snacks will be available at all breaks. 
– Breakfast and lunch are provided both days. 
– Vegetarian, vegan, and gluten free options will be available. If  you have one or more of these dietary preferences, be sure to indicate which one(s) next to your name on the sign-in sheet at the welcome table. 
   Our schedule will give you time to explore the area where you’ll find a variety of eating options.
Check out the ‘Food’ webpage for additional details including a menu for the weekend.
A restaurant list is available on the website.  Copies will also be available in the hall.

BYO CUP: You are encouraged to bring your own cup for coffee and hot drinks, and don’t forget your water bottle.
   We will also have our mug adoption option again this year to help us minimize trash. You may adopt your own ceramic mug from the collection of gently used mugs. Please label your cup and wash it regularly.

RAFFLE: Plan to join in the fun of the Desert Spring raffle by contributing items to be raffled off during the weekend and buying raffle tickets. Check your closets and drawers for beautiful, yummy interesting, quirky or useful items that your friends will cherish (or at least bid on).  Past raffle donations have included hand-crafted items, musical instruments, discounts/free admission to other dance weekends, chocolate, non-perishable food treats, books, jewelry, CDs and other miscellaneous tchotchkes and baubles.  Just bring your donated items to the hall on Friday.  If you can drop them off before the dancing starts, that will help us with getting everything set up.  Buy your raffle tickets early and often, as the raffle will end Saturday night,with winners announced on Sunday morning.  

CLOTHING EXCHANGE: Are you getting tired of that same old shirt? Favorite skirt getting a little tight or loose? Need a new swirly skirt or t-shirt to round out your collection? Bring your clean, new-ish dance clothes and shoes to the clothing exchange and trade them in on a new look. Any items not adopted during the weekend will be donated to a thrift store.

ROSTER: The preliminary Desert Spring Roster is attached. It won’t have those who have recently registered on it.  But it should help if you’re looking for someone to carpool or share a room with. Please review your own information and e-mail Judy at with updates or changes. Print or download a copy for your use during the weekend. A final roster will be emailed after the weekend.

STAY CONNECTED with other Desert Spring dancers, join our Facebook page, Desert Spring Contra Weekend. Here you can chat about getting or offering a ride, sharing rooms, exploring the area (check out the Musical Instrument Museum), or just see who else is excited about the weekend.  Please consider checking the FB page if you’re able to help out fellow dancers with a ride, etc.

LAST MINUTE INFO: Any updates to the info provided here, and any other last minute info will be posted on the ‘Good to Know’ page on our website,, and on our our Facebook page, Desert Spring Contra Weekend. 

PACKING LIST:  Here are some suggestions of things to bring to keep you safe and comfortable in the warm, dry climate of central Arizona.

  • A reusable water container and coffee mug. We will have plenty of liquids on hand, but it helps the environment to cut down on the number of cups we use. There will be marking pens to put your name on your own cup and water bottle. Please be careful with open containers on the wood floor in the ballroom.
  • Light, loose, comfortable clothing. The chance of warm weather is greater than the chance of rain!
  • Several extra shirts / tops if you tend to get damp while dancing. We will have air conditioning and fans in the ballroom, but extra changes might be a good idea.
  • Soft soled shoes that are comfortable and easy to dance in, but separate from street shoes to help protect the dance floor
  • Several extra pairs of cushiony socks
  • A sun hat and sunscreen for your outdoor excursions during the day
  • A notebook or recording device for workshops
  • Ukuleles for the Ukulele jam session
  • Your raffle items and any clothes destined for the clothing exchange.
  • Extra $ for band CD’s and your favorite treasures from the Desert Spring raffle.
  • Flyers and information to share about your home dances and events  

Please DO NOT BRING pets or alcohol.

Please DO bring your unscented hygiene and beauty products for the weekend as a courtesy to your friends with chemical sensitivities.

Pat and Steve Schlect will be hosting an after-party Sunday evening at their home near the Loop 101 and Alma School Rd.  Pat will have flyers with more information at the dance.

OTHER QUESTIONS? Please visit the Desert Spring website at, or email, or call/text Carl at (602) 268-7181. We’ll do our best to find answers and help you have a wonderful weekend in Arizona!

We’ll see you in Mesa on April 26!

The Desert Spring Planning Committee