The National League of Junior Cotillions – Faulkner County chapter

The chapter held its annual Spring Ball on Friday evening, March 11, at the Brewer-Hegemann Center.

Dressed semi-formally, sixth through eighth grade students participated in the elegant evening, complete with dance cards, contests, prizes, corsages and boutonnieres.

The theme for this year’s ball was "An Oriental Evening" and the ballroom was decorated with large metallic gold fans, red silk lanterns, red Chinese New Year decorations and large red banners with gold Japanese writing. The students entered through a pagoda-style archway and the refreshment table was adorned with two large Oriental urns arranged with gilded branches, fresh pine branches, red poppies and red silk lanterns. The tables were decorated with brightly-colored fans in Chinese shirt containers.

The evening ended this year’s Junior Cotillion season, giving the members the opportunity to put into practice all the dances and etiquette they learned during the past year in Cotillion classes. They danced the night away doing the foxtrot, cha cha cha, swing and the waltz.

Prizes were awarded to Landon Baker, Maggie Erbach, Aaron Johnson, Anna Coffman, John Sutton and Blayne Griffin for the foxtrot contest; Parker Evans, Lydia Martin, Grayson Hambuchen, Jackson Spears, Kennedy Cloe, and Michael Shofner for the swing contest; Brenna Kostecky, Claire Lambert, Jackson Karl, Laynie White, Chloe Upton, and Luke Robbins for the Cha-cha contest. Those winning the Oriental Elimination, which required passing red styrofoam balls with chopsticks, were Sydnee Sims, Laura VanHook, Elizabeth deKunffy, Elisabeth Bartholemew, Trinity Methvin and Kaylee Swaim.

"Dip Into Dancing Day" is held annually at the last class so parents and students can learn the waltz. Then parents are invited to dance the waltz with their children at the ball. Winners of the Parent-Child Swing Contest were Nicholas Childress and his mother Janie, Madeleine Tanquay and her father Pete, and William Polk and his mother Mary. Each year the students are asked to select those students that most exemplify the character being taught in cotillion classes. These selections are combined with totals of a point system for class participation to form our cotillion court. The first year prince and princess are Luke Robbins and Jameson Tankersley. Second year students king and queen are Cade Smiley and Sarah Grace Gunter.

Parents who chaperoned for the evening were Bonnie Sutton, Donna Smiley, Joan Shofner, Misty Anderson, Jennifer Leggitt, Tracy Howell, April Hobbs, Susan Steelman, Whitney Miller, Cheryl Deierlein, Shannon deKunffy, Dana Brown and Jennifer Boone.

The local cotillion began in 1993. The seven-month program gives sixth- through eighth-grade students instruction in etiquette, proper manners and social dances. Skills taught include table manners, correspondence, proper introductions, good first impression skills, good posture, paying and receiving compliments, opening doors, assisting with coats and the like.

"It’s designed to train students in the courtesies that make life more pleasant for them and those around them," said Susan Humphries, director. "We have seen these ladies and gentlemen grow in poise and self-assurance. And our second-year students are becoming very mature ladies and gentlemen." "The program gives these middle and junior high students the opportunity to learn and practice in a structured yet fun atmosphere with their peers," said Patrick Humphries, husband of the director, who also helps with the program. "We know the self-confidence that they gain helps them to withstand negative peer pressure."

Membership is open to any interested sixth, seventh, or eighth grade student in the county. Registration for next season will be held in May. For information, or to get your child on the list for the program, contact Susan Humphries at www.nljc.com/chapter/faulknercounty, or susan.humphries@nljc.com.

Arkansas Chapter #34 Colonial Dames of America

The chapter recently elected its second set of officers since organizing in 2004. Elected were Betty Harp, president; Mary-Reid Warner, vice president; Teresa Clark, chaplain; Nell White, secretary; Jean Hirsch, treasurer; Lisa Winkleman, registrar and Peggy Vandenberg, librarian. Organized by Mary-Reid Warner, the Arkansas chapter has experienced exceptional growth.

In addition to historical preservation, the chapter actively supports our veterans through donations to VA central-based operating centers.

Betty Harp is well qualified to lead the organization.

She has held membership and high office in many lineage organizations including Daughters of the American Revolution, Daughters of the American Colonists, Sons and Daughters of the Pilgrims, United States Daughters of 1812, the Huguenot Society and the Arkansas Pioneers Association. CDA is comprised of women descended from an ancestor who gave specified service within the period beginning with the settlement of Jamestown, Virginia, May 13, 1607, and extending to, but not including, the Battle of Lexington on April 19, 1775, in one or more of the 13 original colonies.

Membership is by invitation only. For information contact Lisa Winkleman at 214-636-3491.