Valley Rewind: Square Dance Team at Swannanoa Valley Junior High
In this undated photo, students from the Square Dance Team at Swannanoa Valley Junior High enjoy a lively dance. Square dancing is a famously time-honored tradition in Appalachia, finding its roots in Scotch-Irish reels, and dance traditions from English, French, African American — notably in the role of the dance caller, who allows those who haven't practiced the dance to join in — and even Native American dance. The personal touch applied by Southern Appalachians is the way that couples break from the ring (which these students may be practicing) to dance the Wagon Wheel, Four Leaf Clover, Cage the Birdie, Shoo-Fly-Shoo, or others, before returning to the traditional ring. If you want to learn more about the lively history of music in the Swannanoa Valley, the Swannanoa Valley Museum has recently installed a new exhibit titled "Striking a Chord: Music and Community in the Swannanoa Valley."