Local Hero: Erik Erhardt
Everyone knows Erik Erhardt as one of the champions of our local dance community—one of our local heroes! He selflessly, and often quietly, gives his time and energy to make this community the best that it can be. Erik is a talented caller who is especially skilled at teaching beginning dancers, a valuable gift that he graciously volunteers in service of first establishing and now maintaining free-for-all-students-staff-and-faculty monthly dances on the University of New Mexico campus. His charismatic leadership, dedicated mentorship, and ever-enthusiastic endeavors to reach out and welcome the larger community have engaged younger generations more successfully than any other efforts that New Mexico Folk Music and Dance Society (FolkMADS) has made to date.
Erik has been an active member of our dance community since he joined us almost ten years ago. Some of his many outstanding accomplishments include establishing contra dancing at UNM, leading and calling local techno-contras, teaching waltz and Scandinavian couples dance workshops, forming a Border Morris dance troupe, and founding our New Mexico Callers Collective—a friendly circle of aspiring callers who are learning together from the most experienced callers in our community. Erik opens his home to callers, dancers, and musicians every month when he hosts our collective meetings and practice dances, providing a safe and supportive space for strengthening the relationships within our dance community.
A long-time member of the FolkMADS Board of Directors, Erik is currently serving the community as our acting President of the Board. Thank you for all of your hard work, Erik! Your dedication and the many contributions you make to this community do not go unnoticed. You are truly a FolkMADS hero, and we salute you!
- Submitted by Emily Ruch on behalf of the FolkMADS Board of Directors
Erik dancing at Stellar Days and Nights weekend in Colorado