A year in review (highlights of 2015)

Hello, 2015 is about to end and as always, I annually review the year that is about to end. In this post I will share my top 10 highlights of the lindy hop.

Before I start my list, I just wanted to apologise certain people for not yet blogging about certain events as December was really busy – my final project for uni, my business demanding exceptionally high attention and other stuff that just get in a way.

I am also proud to live very close to London – that means I can come to London within 1 hour of driving and enjoy the massive lindy hop scene we have here, socials pretty much every day and live bands playing live at least once or twice a week. Anyway, without further ado, here is the list of my top 10 highlight of the year:

10. Winter Ball 2015

Winter BallThis event happened in January, I was recently back to lindy hop after one month of lindy break (crazy I know …). The event was held by Swing Patrol and it was truly held. It’s not often that a social night makes into my top 10 highlight. This one did. It was the first time I had competed on spotlights. I had competed unsuccessfully before but usually all-skate (or whatever it’s called) or not passing during the preliminaries. We didn’t make into finals but I enjoyed it nevertheless! It was a great experience for me. Unfortunately, I didn’t blog about it as I was on my short blogging break.

9. The Ahoy Ball 2015

Keep calm & Let Don S(w)ing! With The Cable Street Rag band
Keep calm & Let Don S(w)ing! With The Cable Street Rag band

This is yet another one day event/social on the boat. We were cruising on the river Thames. It was quite similar to mini Lindy Shock. We had amazing band called Cable Street Rag Band which played exceptionally well. While the floor wasn’t best for dancing, the atmosphere was amazing. The boat had 2 floors. Anyway, here’s the blog post.

8. Goodnight Sweetheart 2015

Jenna, Jon and Don
Jenna, Jon and Don

This was the first camp of the year for me. It was great, especially when it was around the corner – 20 minutes driving. Great teachers and socials. Made a lot of new friends. I finally learned how to perform scissor kicks and integrate it into the swing out. Read more about it here.

7. Swing Revolution 2015

Don, Mikaela and Nicolas
Don, Mikaela and Nicolas

I went to Leeds for Swing Revolution 2015 and I immediately fell in love with Leeds … again. I mean, I had gone to Barcelona with 20+ people from Leeds and I had a great time. That’s why Swing Revolution scene was somehow similar. I really loved the teaching material and the socials. People in Leeds know how to put a party … and after-party especially. The atmosphere was one of the loviest I have ever seen … and I have seen a lot of different scenes! Full post can be found here.

6. Oxford Lindy Exchange 2015

Don & 2/3 members of Down for the Count
Don & 2/3 members of Down for the Count

This was my second exchange ever. It was amazing. Oxford is not that far from me. It’s about 1 hour driving, most of the time, I driver longer to certain London venues. The atmospnhere was GREAT! I had, unfortunately, skip certain activities like city tour, etc … and parking was horrible. Sometimes, I would need to park one mile away from the venue. The bands were fabulous though. Click here for full post.

5. European Swing Dance Championships 2015

Don, Sharon & Stephen
Don, Sharon & Stephen

I remember I went to ESDC in 2013 for one day and it was big. This year I did full thing. I did all the workshops and socials. Class material was amazing, socials were great. There were hundreds of amazing dancers. I even felt a bit intimidated because they were so good and amazing and musical and I was not as much. I had amazing time despite that. I made lots of new friends. Thing is, it was truly international event and I was reunited with a few friends I had med somewhere in Europe. Full post is here.

4. London Lindy Exchange 2015

Don & Judy
Don & Judy

This was my first exchange. Am I coming back? ABSOLUTELY! It was amazing. Over 400 or 500 people from all over the world coming to the venue that is not even 1 hour drive away from where I live. That was the first time I heard Gordon Webster playing live and now he is probably in my top 2 swing bands! We had about 6 socials over 4 days and I made into all of them. I just can’t express enough how much I enjoyed it. Such a quality event! Read more about it here.

3. Camp Savoy 2015

One and Only Jenny ThomasCamp Savoy was the best event in the UK I have ever been to. I was in 2014 and it was great but this year, Jenny Thomas outdid herself! I mean, the classes were phenomal, the socials were phenomenal, the band was amazing too! I really enjoyed the quality of teaching and dancing. The cowboy party on Sunday was brilliant as well. That even made me create my first vlog but I will not share it here. You can find it on YouTube somehwere 😀 Instead of me talking about this event here, you can read my 2K words long review here.

2. The Chase Festival 2015

Ali, Don & Katja
Ali, Don & Katja

This year I went to 2 camps that were not in the UK. The Chase Festival was the first one and damn, I regret nothing! While getting from Frankfrut HAHN to Heidelberg could have been a pain in the ass, it wasn’t. I made a new friend on the plane who was travelling to Heidelberg as well and he hepled me out a lot. Anyway, the camp was amazing. It was really hot in Germany. The hotel I stayed had McDonalds nearby 😀 Anyway, the class material was brilliant, socials were absolutely smashing, bands were amazing. I started this new thing – Londoner’s selfie/photo when we are somewhere abroad. I made a lot of new friends, learned stuff, it was great. For a full post, click here.

1. Lindy Shock 2015

Don & Marcell
Don & Marcell

The father of all lindy hop camps I have ever been to in my entire life, Lindy Shick 2014 and Lindy Shock 2015 were best. I mean, Lindy Shock 2015 was even better than the previous one. I am so coming back in 2016. Look, 15+ hours of classes, 50+ hours of social dancing, 50 teachers, 7 days of awesomeness, cruise over a river Danube, 3 massive ballrooms. I could tell you another thousand things about why it was awesome but I think you can read it here.

So to summarise the year, I went to 2 camps abroad and dozens locally, in the UK. I probably danced more than in 2014. I also took less regular classes but more workshops. I had some balboa, blues and shag classes but I still prefer lindy hop. I couldn’t make to Dragon Swing, Swing Castle Camp or Snowball this year but I am sure I will in 2016.

Happy new year, friends!

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Don Mazonas

Don Mazonas

CEO & Founder at Don Markets Limited
Hello, internet marketing (blogging) and swing dancing are two of my biggest passions. Combining them both was a good idea to spread the word about awesomeness of swing dancing. For more information about me, please check the "about" section of this blog.
Don Mazonas

Don Mazonas

Hello, internet marketing (blogging) and swing dancing are two of my biggest passions. Combining them both was a good idea to spread the word about awesomeness of swing dancing. For more information about me, please check the "about" section of this blog.