The Ravenswood Morris Web Page
What is Ravenswood Morris?
Ravenswood Morris is Chicago's Morris team. We "dance out" (perform) at various times and places throughout the year including:
- May Day: We dance the sun up at dawn (you heard me, dawn) every year on the shores of Lake Michigan, at the lakefront park just east of Morse and Sheridan. There is a public parking lot one block north, on the north side of Lunt and the lake shore. Coming by CTA bus or train, get off at Morse and walk east to the lake. This is the approximate location.
- The Dark Morris: A bit of fun lunacy borrowed from the works of Terry Pratchett. We dance the sun up at the start of summer, so shouldn't we dance it down at summer's end? This is the "other" Morris, and it is danced silently at dusk on October 31st, at the same site used for May Day. (See more about the Dark Morris or the AntiMorris). PLEASE NOTE: We will do our 2010 Dark Morris dances on Sunday, October 31, 2010 starting at about 5:00 PM and ending at sunset (5:46 PM). We will then go to supper, probably at The Diner at Clark & Devon, afterwards. Guests are welcome to join us!!!
- Cultural Festivals: We have danced at several of these over the years, including the Custer Street Faire, the Evanston Ethnic Arts Festival, the Skokie Cultural Festival, The Real Ale Festival, and the Chicago Park District's Unity in Our Community festival held in Pottawattomie Park.
- Farmer's Markets: Another fun place to dance out. We have occasionally shown up at these events in Evanston and Oak Park, especially later in the summer.
- Special Occasions: We have appeared on the tv show "Wild Chicago," and have danced at the Evanston First Night celebration, private parties, the Monday night barn dance at the Abbey Pub, and various other venues. We have also been known on occasion simply to show up at some fine Chicagoland drinking and socializing establishment such as Tommy Nevins or The Red Lion. We'll dance for a bit, maybe sing for a bit, and then settle in to enjoy the fine libations available at such places.
- Morris Ales: These are gatherings of Morris dancers held throughout the year in various locations. We attend the Midwest Morris Ale, the location of which changes with the host team each year, and sometimes other ales throughout the region and beyond.
Ravenswood Morris meets to practice intermittently on Thursday evenings from 7PM to 9PM. As of September 2002 we have moved to a new practice site, Hamlin Park fieldhouse (game room, second floor) 3035 North Hoyne in Chicago. The park phone number is
312-742-7785. Newcomers are always welcome, but it is best to contact us in advance and let us know to expect you. We'd love to have you join us.
We are a mixed side which dances Cotswold Morris with a few Border Morris dances thrown in for good measure (particularly during the winter months). Our primary traditions are Bampton and Adderbury, although we do the occasional dance from other traditions as well. Several of our dances are of our own devising, in a tradition we like to call "Evidence in da Trunk."
So just what is Morris dancing? If the preceding paragraph makes so little sense to you that it might as well be written in Greek, or if you just want to learn more about Morris, then check out Informative Stuff and you'll soon understand all...OK, at least some.
Ready to join in the fun?
We dance Morris for many reasons, and one of the most important of these is that it's fun. It's also good exercise and leads to meeting lots of great people in the Morris community around the globe. Still, we don't want to hoard the fun, so if this sounds like something you'd like to do then contact us and become a Morris dancer yourself:
Send email to our Squire: Lowell Kempf
Send email to our Webmaster: Gary
View May Day 2008 photos. For a thought provoking meditation on the meaning of May Day and Morris dancing, please check out this commentary from a member of one of our neighbor teams, Oak Apple Morris, in Madison, Wisconsin.
View May Day 2006 photos.
View some Ravenswood Morris photos.
View some of our AntiMorris 2002 photos.
View the Ravenswood Morris recruitment poster.
Ravenswood Morris is happy to be included in The Chicago Area Folk Dance Scene, a wonderful listing of area folkdance sessions collected by the Folk Dance Council of Chicago, and The Folk Dance Association, a great resource for many different dance styles and groups.
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This page was last updated on October 29, 2010 by Gary Plazyk.
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