An Austinite’s First Time at Austin Swing Dance Championship
Several months ago, the Austin Westie community began its ASDC countdown. Not only were we excited about going to a competition in our own city, we were also excited about supporting our friends and representing Austin. A week before the competition, my strictly partner and I practiced every day. By the time the competition day rolled around, I felt ready.
On the first night of the competition, Tracy and I hosted a college pizza party so that all of the college students could get to know each other. The party was a blast because I met so many new people who I could really relate to because we were in the same age group and had the same passion. On top of that, I got to know people I already knew on an even deeper level, which was great! The party was definitely the highlight of the first night, despite all of the fun dances I had.
The second day was the most tiring because almost all of the competitions were on this day. I competed in the Pro/Am Jack and Jill, the Intermediate Pro/Am Strictly, and the Intermediate Jack and Jill. I had a great time during both Pro/Am dances and felt that I really grew as a dancer from the last time I competed in a Pro/Am. The real stress was not knowing how I would do the next day in the Intermediate Jack and Jill Finals.
Sunday rolled around, and, coincidentally, I was paired with one of my practice partners and good friends for finals. My partner and I were both were really happy and had four amazing dances. We had such a great time and played around with each other. We were lucky to have supportive friends cheering for us as well. Unfortunately, we did not make top 3.
ASDC was my first pointed Intermediate competition since WWW, and in the several months before, I was really hoping to finally earn some intermediate points. My partner and I were both disappointed about not placing and both felt that we let each other down. I suddenly felt that I did not improve as a dancer at all since summer. However, after talking to each other about it, we felt that our partnership was great, and we honestly really enjoyed the dances we had together. I would not have it any other way.
Sometimes it is so easy to get caught up in the competing aspect of events that we forget about why social dancing originated in the first place. Social dancing was meant for us to have fun with our partners and get to know each other. It was meant to foster community. That is why Westie communities are so strong. I am so proud of us!
Ultimately, there was evidence that I grew as a dancer since WWW. After months of practicing and solo dancing, I was able to place first in both the Pro/Am Jack and Jill, the Intermediate Pro/Am Strictly. I am extremely proud of my placements. However, I am most proud of how my Jack and Jill partner and I danced this weekend, with loads of laughter and fun.