John & Barb Rathburn

From the moment John & Barb were introduced to Square Dance in 1992, they were hooked.  Believing that such a wonderful activity should be shared with everybody, they have worked diligently to promote Square Dance everywhere.  Although they were successful in bringing new dancers to the activity just by the exuberance with which they described the fun, fitness and friendship involved, they were not content that they were doing enough. Within four short years of learning to dance they decided that they could more to promote Square Dance as a caller couple. Meanwhile, If there was a job to be done anywhere in the region they were there, and they soon became treasurer couple for Beaus and Belles dance club, and were active members of the South Western Association.

In 1997 John and Barb decided to hone their skills as a Caller Couple. Recognizing that the greater Saint John area was well covered for callers, they let it be known that they were ready to serve in the rural areas. The community of  Bayswater, NB, being without a dance cub, asked John if he was interested in forming one there. With no hesitation, this new caller couple stepped up and the Bayswater Weavers Square Dance Club was born. In April 1998, John & Barb graduated their first class of 15 dancers. Not yet satisfied that they were doing enough for the dance community, they formed a second club, the Fundy Wheelers Club in Pennfield, NB in the fall of that same year. Undaunted by the lack of venue, whenever space or time restraints precluded the use of the halls in Bayswater or Pennfield, John and barb unhesitatingly offered their own home for class and dancing.

In 2000, with the aid of their two small clubs, they organized the Terry Fox Dance for Cancer Research.  The organization and preparation for this event usually involved several months of work each year. Anyone who has attended this event can attest that it has been, and continues to be, a great success. in 2005, following the sixth Terry Fox Dance, having raised over $40,000 for cancer research, they handed over the chairmanship of this special event to the Southwestern NB SRDA. This did not mean, however, that they were done with the Terry Fox Dance. To the contrary, they continue to work just as hard each year for this worthwhile charity.

Everybody knows what a great success the 13th National Convention (2002) turned out to be. And, of course, John and Barb played a major role in this event by serving as Chair Couple of the Publication & Education Committee. They travelled throughout the Maritimes and the New England States in promotion of the convention and gained many friends, both personally and for New Brunswick as a whole.

In 2003 they once again opened up their home and taught dancing to 10 ladies from the TOPS organization. All 10 graduated in Apr 2004. Also in 2004 they graduated 15 more dancers in Bayswater. They are active members of the NB Callers Association and have held executive positions on the the board of Southwestern NB SRDA. They played an active role within the Maritime Callers & Cuers Association (MCCA). And have participated in numerous roles at the annual MCCA dances. This couple continues to be unswerving supporters of National Conventions across the country.

John and Barb have remained committed to the square dance world from the time they became involved, and continue to be true ambassadors for our activity.