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January 26, 1996 - Image 77

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1996-01-26

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

I don't know:Pcicky Lynn Greg from Tra-
cy Byrd, Kenny Chesny from Joe Diffie.
But I'm convinced they all sang on Sun-
day night.
I forgot to tell you. Kathy made each line
move up a row after she taught a certain
move. I tried my best to stay in the back
row. It was inevitable, I was up front. A
small boy with a black cowboy hat sat on
a stool by the wooden fence bordering the
dance floor. He was giggling a lot and star-
ing in my direction. He was staring at me.
Yes, I'm sure.
"People come here for different reasons,"
said Konwinski. "Some people come here
for exercise. Some people come here be-
cause they are beginners. It depends what
people are looking for. We try to reach a
range of people. Everyone learns at a dif-
ferent rate. Anyone can do it. You don't
have to have wanted to do this as a child
or anything."
Konwinski, who has taught everything
from ballet to aerobics, sees country as a
fun extension of her past -training. She said
she once hated country music, but when
she was introduced to the dance, she
learned to like the music.
So there's hope for us all.
But that's the thing about Diamonds &
Spurs. Look around the place on an ear-
ly evening. There are bound to be families.
The place even teaches dance to children.
There were children in my group.
"That's what we want," says Diamond
& Spurs owner Nathan Vestal. "When we
started this club in 1992, there was a coun-
try phenomenon going on. There were feel-
ings about the Gulf War, a very
pro-American feeling was here. Americana
was popular and then the World Cup was
here. And basically
what I did was make
a space for country
dance available here
in Michigan. We
started down a
path."
There are dance
lessons at Diamonds
five nights a week for
all levels of dancers.
The club also has live
entertainment
throughout the year
as well as dance con-
tests.
One dance contest
organizer, Suzie
Brooks, a West
Bloomfield resident,
spends more than
her share of time at
Diamonds, even
though she isn't re-
ally into dancing her-
self. She is a rep for
R.M. Gilligan, a
liquor distributor.
She does a yearly
promotion called the
Black Velvet Smooth
Stepping Contest.
"It is definitely the
latest craze," said
Brooks. "Going to Di-
amonds & Spurs is a

lot of fun. You can go there and watch and
really enjoy yourself. I've gone there for
two hours, and I'll end up staying for four.
I've even sent my parents there."
An unofficial establishment policy, ac-
cording to Brooks, is that if men are in-
terested in meeting women, they have to
know how to line dance and do the "two-
step." Women there are serious about the
dancing.
There are some customers, according to
Vestal, who are at Diamonds three or four
nights a week to practice for contests or
just seriously enjoy the dancing.
Tasha Fotias, the Diamonds & Spurs
manager, doesn't have time to dance. She's
too busy working. Pssst. She's tried it, and
she says it's too difficult.
But...but not for us dancers.
Listen. I've got to go practice swinging
my hips some more. After all, I've got to
be ready the next time Pirates of the Mis-
sissippi come in. (Not a Klezmer band.)
But who knew?
Yee-Haaah! ❑

Are Jews and country music an oxy-
moron? To find out how one Zionist rock-
er is line dancing his way through
Nashville and the record stores, turn to
the Profile page in JN Entertainment.

Above right:
There's a whole lot of shimmying going on at
Diamonds & Spurs in Pontiac.

Right:
A line dancer in training.

Below:
It's Ladies Night on Thursdays at Diamonds &
Spurs.

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