Save the Date: October 4-5, 2024

S.G. Edelweiss

S.G. Edelweiss

In 1961, the German Club of the International Institute of St. Paul, Minnesota, started a dance group to represent them at the Festival of Nations. May Rose and Joe Perrault were engaged to be the instructors and members were encouraged to bring their children along. The performances at the festival went well, but most of the adults found they wanted to spend their time at other endeavors, leaving the children’s group to be on their own.

Practices were moved to the old International Institute building, the site of today’s River Centre. Every other Saturday afternoon, the children would meet, where May Rose and Joe continued instruction on many different German and Austrian dances. In addition to nursing homes and shopping centers, we performed annually at the Junior Festival of Nations.

It wasn’t long, however, before the group split into junior and senior sections. The older kids met and chose “Edelweiss Tänzers” as their new name. Our debut as “Edelweiss Tänzers” was at the St. Paul Harding High School International Festival. We went on to perform at the St. Paul Winter Carnival and the LaCrosse, Wisconsin Oktoberfest, and many others.

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