So, You Think You Can Dance?

It’s the state dance, performed to beach music by fun-loving folks wearing khakis and penny loafers or deck shoes. And it’s loads of fun.

We’re talking about shaggin’, of course. And the Town of Winnsboro and the Fairfield County Chamber of Commerce are bringing it back to Winnsboro on Friday, July 12 with the third annual Shaggin’ in the Street event. Everyone in Blythewood, Fairfield County and beyond who love to shag are invited.

Winnsboro community development director Connie Shackelford said, “shaggin’ is a casual, easy-going dance style, and when you hear that music, it takes you back to the beach, the boardwalk and your youth.”

If that’s the case, then Friday is for shaggers.

“We have a new band, The Foundations, who will be performing this year,” Shackelford said. “This band brings with them a loyal following from out of town.” The Chamber has contacted local shag clubs and invited them to attend the event as well.

The event will take place in front of the Town Clock, beginning at 6 p.m. with DJ Poppa Charlie providing street music to get people in the mood. The Foundations will take the stage about 8:30 p.m., and that’s when the real shaggin’ begins.

Vendors will be selling food items such as wings, fish, chicken fingers and funnel cakes (all foods that I’m sure can be eaten while dancing), and the local merchants will be open in the evening for shopping.

The evening’s festivities will include a shag contest, with first, second and third place prizes awarded to the best shagging couples. Prizes will be valuable gift certificates to downtown merchants. So line up for the electric slide.

Shackelford said she believes the shag is so popular “because you don’t have to know how to do it well, just get out there and do your thing.

“It’ll be a great night for folks in the Winnsboro and surrounding communities to come out and enjoy themselves,” Shackelford said. “It’s a free event that will bring people into town.”

Keep your fingers crossed that we have some nice weather. But, don’t worry – if it rains, a rain date will be announced for a future time.

The Town is planning other events like this during the summer, Shackelford said – maybe another music venue such as country music.

With events like Shaggin’ in the Street and the increasingly popular Third Thursdays, Shackelford said the town and Chamber “have got some momentum going for downtown. We’re working with the merchants, who are excited about the events we’re having, and are putting forth some effort to stay open a little later and offer special sales,” she said.

No one who knows me has ever seen me shag, but there’s always a first time, and it might turn out to be the show-stopper of the evening. So dust off those loafers, slip on your khakis and enjoy a night of good music, good food and great shaggin’. And don’t forget to check out the local merchants who are staying open late just for you. Enjoy one of those events that make downtown Winnsboro special.

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