DERBY LINE – Peg and Robert “Doc” Tirrell of Lower Waterford started square dancing in 1949. On Saturday, the Square Dance Foundation of New England presented Peg and her late husband with the Hall of Fame Award at the Derby Elementary School. The presentation took place during the North Country Swingers monthly dance.
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Bob Graybill, from the Square Dance Foundation of New England, said the couple did a lot for the foundation and for the perpetuation of square dancing in New England.
Prior to Doc’s death, the couple attended and worked at conventions. The couple also called cues for round dancing. Round dancing is similar to ballroom dancing.
Some of their activities include being charter members of the Valley Dance Steppers Round Dance Club. They served as officers with three square dance clubs and five dance clubs and taught round dancing. They were also editors of the Grand Square magazine for the Northern New Jersey Square Dance Association. They were founders of the National Organizations of Legacy and Round-a-Lab. They were also editors of the publication put out by National Square Dancing Campers.
The Square Dance Foundation of New England usually makes the presentation at the annual meeting in May. However, that meeting was at the same time as the Vermont Square Dance Convention, where Peg did some calling, and Saturday was the organization’s first opportunity to present the award.
Peg, who said she was surprised by award, got involved with square dancing when the widow of a family friend asked her to go to a square dancing class.
“I love it,” Peg said of square dancing. “We met some wonderful people. It has been a wonderful thing for us to do.”
A photograph and a plaque like the one presented to Peg will hang at the foundation's headquarters in Manchester, NH.