SCV seniors work their mind and bodies with Sierra Hillbillies

Seniors square danced along with members of the Sierra Hillbillies at the SCV Senior Center during their monthly event/Skylar Barti The Signal

Dancing to modern and classic country, seniors gathered at the SCV Senior Center for a day of line dancing and square dancing with the Sierra Hillbillies.

This month’s theme was “Cowboy Picnic and Dance,” with dancers dressing in western-style clothing for the dance. The dancing changed between the two dances and different eras of music to diversify the feeling for the dancers.

The “Hillbillies” host these dancing events at the Senior Center every month to help seniors meet friends and learn a skill they can take with them everywhere.

“We do this for fun and fitness,” said Philip Alfeld with the Sierra Hillbillies. “It’s both a mental and physical workout. Because they call the calls, there is no set pattern. So you have to react to that and it keeps your brain moving.”

Giving the calls during Sunday’s event was Jay Henderson, who would play with the calls, pausing when the dancers got lost, telling them “smooth” after their corrections.

Sunday’s event was held in memory of a long-time member Frank Kopecky, according to an event release earlier this month.

The Hillbillies are planning a bigger event for September to celebrate their 51st anniversary. The anniversary will feature food and prizes in addition to the dancing, according to an event release from the troupe. The anniversary will kick off at 2 p.m. on Sept. 9.

The Sierra Hillbillies host their monthly dances at the SCV Senior Center from 2 to 5 p.m. on the first Sunday of the month. The event is free to attend.

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