Promenade Family

A promenade is a walk around the set by some or all dancers. The active dancers may go as individuals or as couples. They may go in promenade direction (counterclockwise when viewed from above) or wrong way promenade direction. They may travel all the way around the set or a shorter distance. When not all dancers are active, there is a further choice of traveling around the inside or outside of the set.

A promenade is a dance around the set by some or all dancers. The active dancers may go as individuals or as couples. They may go in the normal promenade direction (counterclockwise) or as a Wrong Way Promenade (clockwise). They may travel all the way around the set or a distance directed by the caller. They may travel inside or outside the set, as directed.

Couples (Full, 1/2, 3/4)

Starting formations Promenade, Squared Set, Right and Left Grand Circle (men facing counterclockwise, women facing clockwise)
Command examples

Promenade Home

Heads Promenade Half (or Halfway)

Promenade, Keep Walking

Promenade, Don't stop, don't slow down

Sides Promenade 3/4

Heads Pass Thru, Promenade 3/4, while Sides Right and Left Thru

All Promenade to the ladies home position

Dance action If necessary, adjust to a Promenade formation as follows:

As a unit, each couple walks in a circular path around the center of the set. If certain couples are named, they promenade around the outside of the set unless directed otherwise.

Couples walk the designated amount, if specified. On the command "Promenade Home" the couples promenade to the man's home position. In both these cases, each couple ends by turning as a unit to face the center of the set. On the other hand, if directed to Keep Walking, couples do not turn in but rather continue walking until the next command is given.

Each couple, as a unit, walks forward around the circle the designated amount or as otherwise directed. On the command "Promenade Home" the couples promenade to the man's home position.

If certain couples are named, they promenade around the outside of the set, unless instructed otherwise.

All promenades should be more than a quarter of the way around the set. If a promenade would go less, then the dancers should add a full promenade.

At the end of the promenade each couple turns, as a unit, to face the center of the set.

Ending formations Squared Set (e.g., Promenade Home), Promenade (e.g., Promenade, Keep Walking), or couples facing in on the outside of the set (e.g., Sides Promenade 3/4; Heads Right and Left Thru).
Ending formations Promenade (e.g., Promenade, Keep Walking), Squared Set (e.g., Promenade Home), or couples facing in on the outside of the set (e.g., Sides Promenade 3/4; Heads Square Thru 3).
Timing1/4: 4, 1/2: 8, 3/4: 12, Full: 16
Styling

When all Promenade, the inside dancer's distance from the center of the set is slightly greater than that of a Star Promenade. If the formation becomes too spread out, the outside dancers will have to walk too far and too fast for proper timing.

The styling for Promenade varies widely. CALLERLAB recommends a certain styling (described below), but new dancers should also be taught the popular styling for their club and their region. Experienced dancers may choose among the various alternatives based on club and regional standards, the previous call, the caller's timing, and their partners’ preferences. For simplicity, the following descriptions are given assuming a normal couple. There are several alternative handhold positions used while promenading. While CALLERLAB recommends the Skater's position (described below), new dancers should be taught the handhold position in popular use in their region and at their club.

Dancers’ left hands are joined in front, with the woman’s left hand, palm down, resting on the man’s left hand, palm up. Some common alternatives for placement of the right hands are:

Skater's position (CALLERLAB recommended): Right hands are similarly joined with the man’s right forearm over the woman’s left forearm. Some dancers move their hands in time to the music.

Skirt Skater's position: The man’s right arm is behind the woman’s back, right hands joined at the right side of the woman’s waist. In a variation, the man’s right hand is placed in the middle of her lower back while the woman’s right hand holds and works her skirt. (See "Skirt Work" in "Part 4: Additional Detail: Styling: Other styling terms and issues".)

Varsouvienne position:The woman's right arm is bent, and her hand is palm up near her shoulder while the man's right arm is behind her, his right hand palm down in her right palm.

In addition to the alternatives mentioned above, when designated dancers Promenade a specified distance from a Squared Set (e.g., Heads Promenade 1/2), the couple handhold is also acceptable. This is also common when couples are sashayed or same-sex.

When dancers are not directed to Keep Walking, there are several ways in which they can finish. In all cases, handholds should blend smoothly to end with a couple handhold. Sometimes they simply turn as a couple to face in. At other times they end with a twirl (see "Twirls" in "Part 4: Additional Detail: Styling: Other styling terms and issues"), in which case the twirl should finish as the couple arrives at their destination. There are two alternatives:

Styling Men’s hands palm up, right forearm over the lady’s left forearm. Lady’s hands resting palm down on the man’s hands. When there are active dancers promenading around the outside of the set, the inactive dancers should take a step toward the center of the set to assist the active dancers in their trip around the outside.
Comments

Especially in singing calls, Promenade Home is usually more than a quarter of the way around the set. If not, dancers are often expected to add a full promenade. As necessary, callers should make it clear what is desired.

On Heads Promenade 1/2, the Sides momentarily step toward the center of the set to make room for those promenading. On Heads Promenade 3/4 (or 1/4), the Sides step into the center and remain there.

When couples Promenade, it is usually as normal couples. Other applications may require workshopping.

When couples are sashayed or same-sex, Promenade Home can be ambiguous (unless everyone is paired with their original partner), and the caller must further specify where couples should end (e.g., Promenade to the girl’s home).

The previous call can blend into Promenade. For example, from Facing Lines, Reverse Flutterwheel, Promenade Home. See "Part 4: Additional Detail: Blending one call into another".

Teaching Tip At the end of a Right & Left Grand or after an Allemande Left, it’s easy enough to direct the new dancers to "Meet your partner with a right hand, join and hold on with your right hands, girls turn back, join your lefts beneath the rights and Promenade".

Single File Promenade

Starting formations Infacing Circle Of 8, Squared Set, Columns
Command examples

Women Promenade Inside, Go Single File

4 Ladies Promenade Inside; Get back home and Swing your guy

4 Ladies Promenade Inside The Ring, Come Back And Give Your Man A Swing

All Promenade Single File; Ladies Backtrack

Promenade Single File; Men turn in and Star by the Right

Promenade; Put the Lady in the Lead, Go Single File

Promenade Go Single File, Ladies Lead And Strut A While

Circle Right; Drop hands; Single File Promenade

Circle Left; Drop hands; Single File Promenade

Circle Left; Same direction, Single File Promenade

Circle Left; Reverse back single file

Couple 1, turn your backs on your partner and Promenade around the outside of the set

Left Touch 1/4; Single File Promenade Home

Dance action

Initial turn: If the dancers have a facing direction around the set (e.g., Columns, Promenade and put the lady in front), no initial turn is necessary. If the dancers are circling they will turn to face the circling direction. If 4 dancers are designated from a Squared Set (e.g., Ladies Single File Promenade), they will step into the center and face promenade direction.

Actives move forward around the set (on the inside, or outside if so directed), in single file (one behind another). The next call determines when the dancers stop and what they do next.

Dance action Dancers move forward in single file (counterclockwise or clockwise, inside or outside the square, as directed).
Ending formation determined by the next call
TimingFour dancers promenade inside to home: 8
Styling

In Single File Promenade man's arms are held in natural dance position; woman's hands on skirt, working with the natural swinging motion.

When there are active dancers promenading around the outside of the set, the inactive dancers should take a step toward the center of the set to assist the active dancers in their trip around the outside. After all active dancers have passed by, the inactives step backward to return to place.

In some areas, while 4 active dancers promenade inside, the inactive dancers clap in time to the music. Comment: In the past Single File Promenade has not been used with fractions. Recently some callers are extending the fractional Promenade dance action to Single File Promenade. Dancers do not face in after they have promenaded the requested amount.

Teaching Tip Inactive dancers who step toward the center should watch the dancers promenading around behind the opposite couple to know when to step back so as to not step on the toes of the ones behind them.

Wrong Way Promenade

Like promenade, except the couples promenade clockwise.

Starting formations Squared Set, Right-Hand Two-Faced Lines, Right and Left Grand Circle (only with men facing wrong way promenade direction and women facing promenade direction)
Command examples

Wrong Way Promenade Home

Wrong Way Promenade, keep walking

Heads Lead Right; Veer Left; Promenade Wrong Way, don't slow down; Heads Wheel Around

Veer Left; Couples Circulate; Promenade this way home

Heads Wrong Way Promenade 3/4

All Promenade; All Wheel Around; Wrong Way Promenade; girls Star Right, boys Backtrack

Allemande Left; turn partner right a full turn to a Wrong Way Thar; boys Run; Wrong Way Promenade

Wrong Way Grand; Wrong Way Promenade Home

Dance action Wrong Way Promenade is just like Promenade, except dancers go clockwise (i.e., in the opposite direction of Promenade). However, when starting from a Right And Left Grand Circle with genders as described in the starting formation above, the necessary adjustment, like for Promenade, involves the women turning around as the men step forward, but the men must step to the outside to form normal couples.
Ending formations Squared Set (e.g., Wrong Way Promenade Home), Wrong Way Promenade (e.g., Wrong Way Promenade, Keep Walking), or couples facing in on the outside of the set (e.g., Sides Wrong Way Promenade 3/4; Heads Square Thru 3).
Timing 1/4: 4, 1/2: 8, 3/4: 12, Full: 16
Styling Same as for Promenade.
Comments

Wrong Way Promenade is infrequently called and is usually used from normal couples, i.e., the girls will be on the inside.

Some callers omit “Wrong Way” or say “This Way” if dancers are already moving in or facing in wrong way promenade direction.

Also see the comments for Promenade (#5a).

Star Promenade

Starting formation 4-dancer star in the center of the set and 4 dancers around the outside of the set
Command examples

Men Center With A Left-Hand Star, Go Once Around; Pick Up Your Partner With An Arm Around; Star Promenade

4 Men Make A Left-Hand Star; Pick Up Your Partner With An Arm Around; Star Promenade

4 Ladies Make A Right-Hand Star; Pick Up Your Partner With An Arm Around; Star Promenade

Heads Make A Right-Hand Star; Pick Up Your Corner With An Arm Around; Star Promenade

Heads Make A Left-Hand Star; Pass Your Corner And Pick Up The Same Sex; Star Promenade

Dance action Directed dancers (e.g., men) form (or are already in) a star and turn it. When they encounter the next directed dancer (e.g., partner) they become a couple, and promenade while retaining the center star.
Ending formation Promenade or Wrong Way Promenade with centers forming a star; the dancers will be closer together than usual because of the star and arm around the waist.
Timing 1/2: 6, 3/4: 9, Full: 12, Full plus a back out at home: 16
Styling The center star uses the same styling as Right- or Left-Hand Stars. Couples in the star have their adjacent arms around each other's waists in a modified couple's hold. Any women on the outside use their outside hand for skirt work. Any men on the outside have their outside hand on their waists or at their sides.
Comments

Here are some calls used while Star Promenading:

(women on the outside) Girls Backtrack Centers Back Out With A Full Turn Around And A Little Bit More; Join 16 and Circle Left Boys Raise Your Left Hands; Girls Duck Thru To The Partner; Right And Left Grand Back Out At Home

Here is an example of 2-dancer stars being used with Star Promenade:

Head Men Make A Left Hand Star; Pick Up Your Partner With An Arm Around And Star Promenade; She Picks Up Her Corner With An Arm Around And Keep On Moving; Now He Picks Up His Partner; All Bend The Big Line.