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Busking in Brooklyn NYC

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All three teams planed to meet on the Promenade, here in Brooklyn, New York City. this Monday evening. We’ve been dancing out at the Promenade for years, especially in the spring. There were The Ring O’ Bells Morris, The Bouwerie Boys and my side, Half Moon Sword. All the usual suspects.


We meet at 7:00 and dance till dusk. The Promenade is famous for its spectacular views of New York Harbor with the Statue of Liberty, the Manhattan skyline, the sunset illuminating billowing clouds over New Jersey to the West. 


It is really a great place to dance. The audience is just passing through on their way to and from dinner. Kids, babies, bicycles, local old folks out for a stroll, tourists from anywhere you please.


In between playing concertina for the 1/2 Moon dancers, I went busking with my hat in hand, There were a few dozen interested audience members though folks would come and go in this busy park. I would boldly approach small groups of onlookers, selling them “Good Luck” for only a penny. The luck of the Morris is bought cheaply. Any amount will do. 


That was my line, but then I had many interesting conversations and answered lots of questions. “What culture is this dancing from?” I would explain that what they were seeing were Americans doing traditional English dancing from a variety of Cotswold village traditions. 


At first, nobody had any money in their pockets. So I added my phone to my hat with my venmo QR code on display and started raking in the cash.


Between Venmo, bills and coin, I collected $53.50 in two hours from our delighted and luck hungry patrons. 


After dancing, we retired to the Custom House for drinks and food. We tallied up the money and decided to “eat the bag”. Those of us who left early had to pay the “Party Pooper Penalty” and got none, but those of us who stayed for the after party got $3 each off their bar tab. So be it.



Edited by Jody Kruskal
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