Pumpkins and gourds were grouped on the tables; spiders, bats, and witches decorated the room and the lights were dimmed to set the mood. Just about 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 19, volunteers and many Byron Ladies Auxiliary members dressed in costume prepared to welcome the 50-plus costumed dancers into the hall.
The dancers were all shapes and sizes and they took pride in their colorful costumes. There were princesses, pirates, firemen, surgeons, prisoners, witches and ghouls. The Halloween dance for Genesee County Adults with Developmental Disabilities in the new season was off to a great start!
Old friends greeted and hugged while new friends met up on the dance floor. DJ Uncle Joe played assorted country, rock, and pop tunes. He even showed some music videos, while volunteers served up refreshments of pizza, cookies, and cider.
About an hour into the event Pat Iamon, past dance coordinator, turned up the lights, grabbed the mic, and quieted the crowd. She called the dancers into a large circle and led the group in the ‘Chicken Dance.’ Staff and volunteers joined in. The DJ followed that with the ‘Hokie Pokie’.
Iamon then invited all those with October birthdays to come to the center. About nine happy folks came forward and the room joined together singing them the birthday song. The last thing on the agenda was to introduce Morgan Leaton, the new dance coordinator, to the room. The crowd cheered and applauded Leaton as she took the mic.
Leaton thanked everyone for coming to the Halloween Dance, she welcomed them back to Byron, and announced that the next dance would be on Thursday, Nov. 16. She encouraged everyone to wear their cowboy hat and boots because the November dance theme is Country & Western.
The tunes played on and on while the dancers moved to the music. Some danced as couples, some in groups and some alone. When the crowd heard the intro to the YMCA, two of Byron’s firemen who had donned their firefighter suits earlier entered the dance floor. The dancers happily gathered around them and everyone enthusiastically danced the YMCA!
Too soon the night came to an end and the dancers followed their staff out of the building promising to return. There were shouts of Happy Halloween as they left. The dances are open to anyone with developmental disabilities aged 13 and up residing in Genesee County. If you would like more information or wish to volunteer, please contact Morgan Leaton at 585-815-3157 or email@example.com.