About Us

In 1985 Jean Swearingen (now Aills) and Charlie Prass approached Ken Roberts (who was just starting to call) about starting a singles square dance club in the city of Dayton. Ken said that he thought that the best way to start a club would be to start a class and see if that new group of dancers would start a club. Charlie knew of a place we could dance.

With a lot of help from friends, “Sunshine Squares” class began on Sept. 9, 1985 at Salem Lutheran Church, 2000 Catalpa Dr., Dayton, Ohio. Everyone had a good time and Ken even let Charlie Neu do some singing calls. Remember, at this time Ken was a relatively new caller.

There was talk of starting a new club, and on April 7, 1986 the club had their first meeting.

Some of the highlights of the first meeting are:
Name: Gem City Squares was chosen
Dance and membership fees were set $1.75, & $2.00; Dues $3.00 per year
Dance days: 1st & 3rd Sunday, 7:00-10:00 pm, Plus Level
Date set for election of officers: May 5, 1986
Ken Roberts named as club caller
First Club Dance Scheduled for June 15, 1986
Decided to join MVDC as soon as we can.
Charlie Prass presented badge design that was accepted that night.

Original 34 members:
Larry & Martha Boyd, Judy Brackman, Bob & Sharon Brooks, Hazel Buckley, Ozal Caldwell, Nell Campbell, Bob & Jean DeRegnaucourt, Kim Dorn, Lila Dorn, Mike Green, Sally Hagins, Bob & Sharon Howard, Rick Kroll, Martin Matkoski, Charlie & Denise Neu, Louise Palmer, Charles Prass, Ken & Sher Roberts, Brenda Romine, Fay Samborsky, Cathy Schaurer, Bill & Mary Shelby, Jean Swearingen, Jack Welch, Joyce Wilfong, Louise Willemse and Grace Willoughby

1st club officers were:
Mike Green – President & Council Rep
Rick Kroll – Vice-President
Jean Swearingen – Secretary
Sher Roberts – Treasurer
Bobby Brooks Board Member (this office is now our past Pres.)
Sunshine Squares Class graduated 16 new dancers on May 12, 1986.
1st Constitution and by-laws accepted July 6, 1986
On May 18, 1987, “Gem City Squares” graduated their first class of seven new dancers.
Joe Bussiner, Deborah Derksen, Mary Lou Erhart, Tom & Nancy Harker, David Warsofski and Leonard Watts