Jesse and Zach had no idea what they were getting into when they began organizing events in 2008, starting with the AA workshop at which Michael and Jaya taught an enthusiastic group of 30 students. In the summer of 2009 they came up with Pirate Swing, and the rest is history. Well-documented history, with lots of silly costumes.
Jesse and Zach travel regularly to dance events, both for the social dancing and the classes, and enjoy teaching the occasional class themselves. They're always on the lookout for more friendly and approachable teachers to add to the Pirate Swing lineup.
Lauren does a lot of good for Pirate Swing. She sanity-checks our crazy ideas. She manages our promotional crew, ensuring they have all the information they need to spread the word for when the Pirate Swing crew comes to port. She also keeps things running smoothly at the registration table during evening dances. We greatly appreciate the reliability, responsibility, and common sense that Lauren brings to these very important tasks.
Andi Hansen has been organizing almost since she started dancing; being instrumental in her home city of Grand Rapids' swing and blues scenes. Her passion for others to learn and love the dance and music has shown itself in the dancers and DJs she has helped to mentor over the years. She is beyond excited for her first Pirate Swing as a crew member, and hopes that *you're* excited for this year, too!
Sarah Lokay is a regular at Pirate Swing. She has kept office hours running smoothly for years, and has provided many hours of work to help keep the ship sailing (and the captains' sanity intact!).
This year, she is our "at the event" volunteer wrangler. She'll keep all the posts manned, and will ensure everything is ship shape!
Traditionally, the sailmaker is in charge of all the cloth and canvas on a ship, including the flags. Mariel hand-painted the two huge pirate flags we have hoisted at Pirate Swing over the years, and is the creator of all of our wonderful pirate artwork.
If you would like some wonderful artwork for your event, Mariel happily takes commissions!
Braden takes beautiful photos of all sorts of humans, both on and off the dance floor, and we are delighted to have him at Pirate Swing for yet another year. In addition to mad photography skills he has some pretty cool tattoos and has been known to play the ukulele.
Find more photos at Braden's American Vernacular Facebook page.