July 8, 2008

Line Dancing on the Jones Beach Boardwalk

By Pat Burson, Newsday, Melville, N.Y.

Jul. 8--Hey, Twinkle Toes!

Slide on your dancing shoes and head outdoors one evening this summer to sway, sashay, move and groove to the music that moves your soul.

Here is a sampling of free Long Island spots where you can go and dance -- with or without a partner -- under the stars.

Hither Hills State Park

MONDAYS, 7-8:30 p.m. WHERE Old Montauk Highway, Montauk

WHEN Through Aug. 25

PHONE 631-668-2554

WEB nysparks.com

Monday nights are made for country-western line dancing at Hither Hills State Park in Montauk.

Instructor Primo Fiore of Deer Park, who has been teaching dance for 46 years, says the free sessions attract everyone from toddlers to seniors.

Look for him to mix it up, depending on the crowd's age level, interests and abilities. For instance, one minute he might be calling a square dance, the next giving instruction in country-western line dancing and the next leading the group in the hokey-pokey or the chicken dance.

"The goal and object," he says, "is that they have a good time."

Jones Beach State Park


7:30 p.m.

WHERE Boardwalk bandshell, Wantagh;

park in Field 4

WHEN Through the end

of August

PHONE 516-826-5979

WEB jonesbeachevents.com

Feel the rhythm of a Latin beat on Sunday nights at the Jones Beach boardwalk bandshell, led by instructors from Rhythms & Soul Dance Studio in Levittown.

"Latin dancing is the most popular," says Rocco Panetta, of Jones Beach Events, which puts on the event along with other nightly shows at the bandshell. "Latin music is so easy to dance to. It won't let you sit there, and it makes

you get up there and dance to it."

On Wednesday nights, Sherry Palencia of North Babylon leads the throngs in contemporary line dancing. It's open to everyone, "3 years old to 100 years old," Panetta says.

And if your concerned about not having a partner? "You don't need any partner," he says. "Come down by yourself. Maybe you'll pick up a partner."

Wildwood State Park

FRIDAYS, 8 p.m.

WHERE Hulse Landing Road, Wading River

WHEN July 11 to Aug. 29

PHONE 631-929-4314

WEB nysparks.com

If square dancing is more your speed, Primo Fiore will teach you to promenade, do-si-do and allemande left all over the dance floor -- or, in this case, the lower parking field at Wildwood State Park.

Dancers should bring their dancing shoes and a lounge or beach chair.

for more


dance lessons

WHERE Dix Hills Pool

PHONE 631-351-3089

WEB town.huntington.ny.us

COST $20-$45 for

the series

If you want to learn a dance from a different culture or era, you're sure to find something on the extensive list of classes offered by the Town of Huntington on summer evenings at the Dix Hills Pool.

The 60- to 90-minute classes cover everything from bellydancing (7-8:30 p.m. Tuesdays through July 22) to salsa (7-8 p.m. Mondays through Aug. 25) and are held in a lighted patio area adjacent to the Dix Hills Pool. (During inclement weather, classes move inside). Town residents and nonresidents 16 and older are welcome, but Huntington residents get first preference when registering, which is required.


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