Commemorative Square Dance Stamp

by BettyLee Talmadge, editor of Dancin' News (Central Florida)

A major national campaign is being mounted for the post office to issue a commemorative stamp honoring Square Dancing. The 50th national Square Dance Convention was picked as its theme.

In part, here is how this all got started. In August 1998, at he Whittier Tanglefeet dance in Whittier CA, a director suggested that everyone send a letter to the post office requesting consideration for a square dance postal stamp. They all did.

They received a letter in return with specifications on how to qualify for a postage stamp. Their cause qualified!

But a few weeks later they received another letter saying that since the square dance stamp had been turned down 8 times previously, the matter was closed. They then decided that maybe a petition would forward their cause.

They contacted Senator Dianne Feinstein of California, and she wrote back saying that the U.S. Post Office would be happy to forward their petition to their Citizens' Committee that makes all of the postal recommendations. This reopened the matter.

They now have until early June 1999, when the committee gets ready to finalize their choices, to work on this project. Normally, all proposals for a stamp must be submitted at least 3 years prior to the time of the event that they commemorate.

In the year 2001 the Citizens's Committee will announce their choices and in 2001 the chosen stamps will be printed. The post office always chooses a prominent national artist to design the stamps chosen.

Both the Square D Club (the sponsors of the National Convention) and the 50th National Square Dance Convention are supporting the efforts for this special stamp. The 50th National Square Dance Convention is scheduled in Anaheim, CA June 27-30, 2001.

This is an extra special convention not only because it is our 50th, but the 1st National was held in Riverside California; the 25th in Anaheim (wish is about 40 miles from Riverside), and in the year 2001 they will host the 50th, again in Anaheim.

There are so many active, hard-working square dancer in California, they have also hosted the 5th in San Diego; the 13th in Long Beach, and the 37th in Anaheim.

The Western Square Dance Association was first in being solidly behind the stamp petition. The are the oldest Association in California, in their 51st year, and they serve the North-Eastern portion of the Los Angeles basin.

Since the petitions, e-mail, and letters were started, mail is being received daily in support of this campaign. Several State Councils have expressed their solid backing.

If you and your club are interested in assisting with this promotion - and we should ALL be interested - we are inviting you to start a petition within your Association and in your clubs to help back this special project.

With a postage stamp we can bring square dancing into view in everyday life. We need all the national advertising we can get, and this will be free. And indirectly, we will also be promoting the 50th National Square Dance Convention.

If you and your club are interested- additional information can be received by contacting Pearl and Tom Kardos, Directors and Newsletter editors of Western Dance Association., 626/964-1941.

This article may be reprinted with no further permission from the authors and/or publications. Permission has been granted in advance for the reprinting with the stipulation that credit be given to the contributing author/publisher.