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Dance the night away

Venues where you can move to the music in Ripon & Manteca

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Dance the night away

Dancers during Manteca Park and Recreation’s annual Teen-Senior Prom conducted every June.

HIME ROMERO/209 file photo


POSTED July 18, 2014 8:01 p.m.

Boogie the night away.

Do a line dance.

Rock and roll ‘round the clock. Well, maybe not exactly 24/7.

But there are places in the Family City and the Almond Capital of the World where you can cut a rug and trip the light fantastic to your favorite tunes – either played by a live band or a lively disc jockey. The two main dancing destinations where you can dance the night away are at Rookies Sports Bar & Grill in Manteca and the Main Street Inn in Ripon.

Here’s what makes the good news even better at Rookies. Not only does this favorite recreation and entertainment complex offer line dancing on Wednesday and Saturday evenings, but on Saturdays, they offer free line dancing lessons with instructor Pat Mitchell from 6:30 to 8:30. After that, Rookies turns into a country bar complete with a country band at 9 o’clock and you can practice the toe-tapping steps and moves you just learned until 1 a.m.

The dance lessons are free of charge. And there is no cover charge at the door.

Double your week’s dancing fun at Rookies. Come in on Wednesdays and enjoy more line dancing from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. “or longer,” said Bianca, Rookies’ bartender.

In Ripon, at the Main Street Inn in the historic downtown, Friday and Saturday are dance nights.

“You can dance to live music, and we have a deejay some nights,” said bartender Debbie Medeiros.

“You can dance to karaoke, too,” she said with a laugh.

The rest of the good news – there is no cover charge.

As for the bands, “they can also play whatever is requested. It’s always rock and roll,” she said.

“Fridays and Saturdays are very popular” at the Main Street Inn because of the dancing, which usually goes on until 9:30 p.m.

The bands that provide the dance music are selected by Main Street Inn’s Joan Corso. Those who are looking for a gig are asked to send a demo CD to Corso.

There’s daytime dancing available in Manteca as well. The only requirement is that you have to be at least 50 years. It is held every second and fourth Sunday of the month from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Manteca Senior Center. You don’t even need to bring a partner to this event, which always features a live band.

There’s a cover charge of $4 per person at the door.

“You are not required to bring a partner. There are lots of singles that attend. Sometimes we have women that dance with each other. I don’t think we have guys that dance with each other,” commented volunteer Carol Richardson.

If you need some warm-up and practice prior to attending the senior dance, or before you step onto the dance floor at Rookies or Main Street Inn, and you meet the minimum age qualification, the Manteca Senior Center offers a number of dance lessons including line dancing (offered every Tuesday starting at 10 a.m.), Latin dance which is similar to Zumba on Friday afternoons, and tap dancing on Thursdays starting at 10:15 a.m. Dance lessons are usually $7 a month. Call 209.456.8650 for further details.

A number of dancers seen at Rookies in Manteca are actually dance students at the senior center.

“Several of the people who take line dancing go there (at Rookies). They learn how to do it here, and then they go down there and do it,” Richardson said.

Rookies is located in the Manteca Bowl & Family Fun Center at 1251 East Yosemite Avenue at the northeast corner of Cottage Avenue. Take Highway 99, exit at E. Yosemite Avenue, turn onto Yosemite going west and enter either via the East Yosemite entrance or around the corner at Cottage Avenue. 

To get to Main Street Inn in Ripon, take southbound Highway 99, take the downtown exit, make a right on the first street which is Locust, then a quick right on Main Street. The Inn is at the end of Main on the right. The address is 130 East Main Street.

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