Local Hero: Ellen Riley
Ellen Riley founded the San Diego English Country Dancers (SDECD) in October 2000. She is an English country enthusiast who moved to San Diego from Philadelphia in the early 1980s. In San Diego she found the outlets for fulfilling her passion to be rather wanting; she actually practiced ECD figures by spreading towels on the floors and using them as surrogate partners! Soon enough, and eager to find like-minded, flesh-and-blood beings to dance with, Ellen founded the organization, and began holding weekly dances in a studio on Oak Knolls Road in Poway.
Ellen is very active in SDECD, which just celebrated it's 15th anniversary. She calls for the club at least once a month and organizes the rest of the callers, since the club meets every Sunday night. She started an advanced dance session, which meets once a month. She also organizes ball practices for the club as necessary.
Ellen's passion for English County Dancing is evident when you talk to her. Her quote from the SDECD web site (www.sdecd.org) says it all: ""I love travel, hiking and reading, but English Country Dancing is my consuming passion. The beauty of the music, as well as the grace and elegance of the steps, are some of the reasons I love this traditional form of dance.
- Submitted by Bob Griffin