What is Contra Dancing?

If Swing dancing and Square dancing met in a bar, you’d get Contra.

Contra dancing is a type of community folk dance. You’ll dance to live music with a partner, although bringing a partner is not necessary. Contra Dancing is a great way to meet new people!

Couples form parallel lines and, over the course of the dance, move up and down the dance floor, interacting with every other couple in their line. There is no fancy footwork involved – anyone can do it! Calling all of the dances from the stage, the Dance Caller teaches each dance before the music starts. As the dance progresses, the Dance Caller provides fewer and fewer prompts until, dropping out entirely, they allow you, your partner, and everyone else on the dance floor to finish the dance accompanied only by the exciting music!

New to Contra Dancing? We've written up some Tips for Beginners.

Still have questions? Maybe we've answered them in our FAQs.


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1st and 3rd Fridays of every month.

Come Dance with Us!

Next Dance: December 21st Holiday Ball with New York's favorite contra band Grand Picnic & calling by Alexandra Deis-Lauby.

There will be hot cider, extra waltzes and some of the best music in the City!

Grand Picnic combines the rhythmic drive of old-time Southern fiddling with traditional New England and Quebecois tunes. Based in New York and beloved by the dance community for more than 30 years, Grand Picnic includes veteran musicians Marco Brehm (bass), Michael Gorin (fiddle), Jody Kruskal (concertina), Bill Peek (piano) and Sam Zygmuntowicz (fiddle). 

Dance Location:

Camp Friendship, 339 8th St, Park Slope, Brooklyn.

Unless otherwise noted, tickets are always available at the door. Advanced tickets are available on Brown Paper Tickets until 6pm on the day of the event. $15 regular admission, $12 students.

Beginner's Lesson at 7:30pm. Dancing starts at 8:00pm

Please bring clean, soft-soled dancing shoes. Heels are very hard on our floor and we ask that you leave them at the door.

We dance on the 1st and 3rd Fridays of each month. We also regularly throw special events. We try to list all of our upcoming dances in our Calendar. Sign up for our newsletter and never miss a dance!