Dance Club Struggles To Fund New Venue - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

Dance Club Struggles To Fund New Venue

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BOZEMAN -

The Save Our Barn at Montana State University is closed.

Now, organizations like the Swing Country Dance Club are struggling to find an affordable place to hold their weekly dance events.

For over 10 years, the dance club has been offering free Friday dancing at the SOB Barn on Montana State University's campus.

A few months ago, the club had to move their weekly dance events, after the building did not meet fire safety code.

"The electrical wasn't up to code," said Sierra Oehlke, Swing Country Dance Club President. "For the building to properly function, an elevator, sprinklers and fire extinguishers would need to be added."

Oehlke said they are looking for a new place to hold the free Friday events, but it's been hard finding an affordable and convenient place.

"We've looked at the fairgrounds, but the cost is a problem," said Oehlke. "We also want to accommodate those who don't have a vehicle."

Currently, the club practices at the Bob Miller Pavilion, located across campus.

"Before break we were paying $120 a night," said Oehlke. "Now, we are doing an agreement where we're able to get it for free every week, but that could change at anytime."

But, participants like Christine Houk said it's not the most suitable place to practice.

"It's a little bit harder to get to because it's farther away from campus," said Houk. "It's also a little bit harder to dance on the dirt compared to the hard wood floors  that were in the SOB Barn."

Before the club moved, they had about 300 participants. Now, Houk said not as many people are actually dancing.

"There's a lot of people sitting now than when the events were at the SOB Barn," said Houk.

MSU offered to match every dollar donated up to $500 per semester to help the club.

If you would like to donate, email Sierra Oehlke at swingcountrymsu@gmail.com.

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