Stringtet Logo
Old-time dancing is fun, lively, energetic and easy!

Michigan square dance callers Jim & Loretta McKinney, have been dancing since 1988, playing for dances since 1992 and teaching old-time dancing since 2007. They love introducing square dances and other old-time dancing to people who have never tried it. Their friendly, easy-going style and clear explanations get everybody moving quickly and ensure everyone has a lot of fun. No previous dance experience is necessary.

House parties, birthday parties, anniversaries, family reunions, graduations, wedding receptions, barn dances, school groups, school programs, scout groups, church groups, fund-raisers and historic events are all great places to include old-time dancing.

Frequently Asked Questions about old-time dancing.

Reviews of our square dances.

Contact us for more information about including old-time dancing at your next event.

Jim CW Calling
School Program
May 2008

Church Program
Church Program
Troy, MI
Sept 2008

Wedding Reception
Wedding Reception
Troy, MI
May 2012

School Program
School Program
May 2012

AACTMAD Caller Lab
AACTMAD Caller Lab
Ann Arbor, MI
May 2012

Wedding Reception
Wedding Reception
Dearborn Heights, MI
June 2012

Wedding Reception
Wedding Reception
Dearborn Heights, MI
June 2012

Jim @ Marshall
Canton Public Library
Canton, MI
July 2012

Orchard Lake Block Party
Outdoor Block Party
Orchard Lake, MI
Sep 2012

Honolulu House
Marshall Civil War Ball
Marshall, MI
Sep 2012

Marshall Civil War Ball
Marshall Civil War Ball
Marshall, MI
Sep 2012

Marshall Civil War Ball
Marshall Civil War Ball
Marshall, MI
Sep 2012

Contra Dance
Contra Dance
Rossford, OH
Nov 2012

Private Party
House Party
Canton, MI
Dec 2012

Private Party
House Party
Canton, MI
Dec 2012

Contra Dance
Contra Dance
Rossford, OH
Jan 2013

Contra Dance
Scarlet Runner String Band
Rossford, OH
Jan 2013

Church Event
Church Program
Ferndale, MI
Feb 2013

Church Event
Church Program
Ferndale, MI
Feb 2013

Loretta CW Calling
School Program
May 2013

Jim CW Calling
School Program
May 2013

Jim CW Coldwater
Coldwater Civil War Ball
Coldwater, MI
May 2013

Jim CW Port Sanilac
Port Sanilac Civil War Ball
Port Sanilac, MI
August 2013

Marshall CW Ball 2013
Marshall Civil War Ball
Marshall, MI
Sept 2013

Civil War Wedding Reception
Civil War Wedding Reception
Union City, MI
Sept 2013

Greenfield Village
Greenfield Village Hoedown
Dearborn, MI
Sept 2013

Jim CW Calling
School Program
May 2014

Loretta CW Calling
School Program
May 2014

Graduation Party
Graduation Party
Hadley, MI
June 2014

Wedding Reception
Wedding Reception
Pontiac, MI
June 2014

Civil War Ball
Civil War Ball
Port Sanilac, MI
August 2014

Wedding Reception
Wedding Reception
Bowling Green, OH
August 2014

Wedding Reception
Wedding Reception
Laingsburg, MI
Oct 2014

Birthday Party
Birthday Party
Lake Angelus, MI
Nov 2014

Birthday Party
Birthday Party
Grosse Pointe, MI
Dec 2014

Retirement Party
Retirement Party
Toledo, OH
Apr 2015

Girl Scout Square Dance
Girl Scout Square Dance
Wixom, MI
Apr 2015

Troy Historic Village
Troy Historic Village
Troy, MI
May 2015

Loretta Calls Collage
Barn Dance
Holly, MI
October 2015

Loretta at Uncle Lyle's Tavern
Square Dance
Uncle Lyle's Tavern
Dundee, MI
April 2016


Home Performances Profiles Resume Recordings Weddings Christmas Photos
Videos Links Contact Order Raber Carmichael Dance




Frequently Asked Questions

Our group has never done this before. Is this something we can do?
We specialize in teaching fun, easy, old-time dances to people with little or no dance experience. Our program consists of easy, basic figures in a variety of square, circle and line formations. There is no fancy footwork. All dances use a normal, walking gait. No previous dance experience is necessary.

Does it take a lot of time to learn?
All of our dances are taught in 3-5 minutes then the music starts and the fun begins.

How long do we dance?
Our dances are flexible; customized to meet the needs of your group and the events on your agenda. Anyone can take a break at any time and anyone can join a dance at any point in the program. Most people who are new to old-time dancing are ready for a short break or a drink after two or three dances. Our 3-hour dance program can be shortened or divided into as many segments as necessary to accommodate the needs of your group and your schedule.

How many people does my group need for a dance?
The minimum number of people for a dance is eight. There is no maximum limit.

How much room do we need?
We've led dances on driveways and in dining rooms; on grass and on carpet; in garages, gymnasiums, barns and ballrooms. A typical square is 8' x 8' so a 30' x 20' space will accommodate six squares or 48 dancers. A typical longways set like the Virginia Reel is 6' x 15' so the same 30' x 20' space will accommodate four sets or 48 dancers. We can adapt the dancing to the space you have available. A clear open space with no posts is preferred.

Do we need equal numbers of men and women or boys and girls?
Old-time dancing is a fun activity and works very well for mixed groups, but that's not a requirement. Most of our dance directions are addressed to partners and neighbors so everyone can dance with whomever they are most comfortable. This works especially well with youth groups that may feel awkward dancing with members of the opposite sex.

Is there an age limit?
There is no age limit but there is a developmental requirement. Dancers who can stand on their own feet, listen, follow directions, walk in time to music and know the difference between left and right will have fun and be successful no matter what their age.

What should I do to prepare for a dance?


What do you need in order to teach and call for a dance?
We bring all the tables, cables, cords and equipment we need in order to be heard and play the music we use for dances. We need room at the edge of the dance floor to set up our six foot table; preferably away from doorways, aisles and other high-traffic areas. We need access to a standard, 110 volt, household electrical outlet.

Do you use a live band or recorded music?
Yes! Both options are available. The lively music of The Golden Griffon Stringtet is an exciting enhancement to any event, while our large collection of traditional, fully-licensed, recordings gives us access to the best dance music from the best musicians in the nation. Contact us to discuss the choice that best suits your needs.

What is your dance party philosophy?
We want to make sure YOUR event is a success. We want to make sure everyone who dances has fun. We don't care if people dance "perfectly" as long as they are enjoying themselves.


Home Performances Profiles Resume Recordings Weddings Christmas Photos
Videos Links Contact Order Raber Carmichael Dance