Visiting caller from the Smokey Mountains of Tennessee


By Carla Roberts

Special to The PREVIEW

A top-level caller graced the High Country Squares for a Sept. 8 special dance where eight squares enjoyed the fantastic time on the floor with Gary Shoemake, one of the great callers in the U.S.

Gary’s travels have taken him to all 50 states, as well as Mexico, Canada, England, Scotland, Germany, Japan, New Zealand, Sweden, Denmark and Central America.

Shoemake was born in Oklahoma, spent many years in Texas and now makes his home in the Smokey Mountains of Tennessee.  In 1987, Gary became director and part owner of English Mountain Retreat, in Sevierville, Tenn., where he makes his home.

In 2000, Gary and his partners sold the retreat and he is now traveling full time as a caller and caller coach.  Gary’s calling dates and seminars take him nationwide.

A prolific recording artist in the square dance genre, he recorded for Chaparral Records with his recording partners Ken Bower, Jerry Haag, Marshall Flippo and Scott Smith for the past 20 years. Gary is now recording with Rhythm Records (along with Ken, Jerry and Marshall).  Gary has also recorded for Crown Records, Eagle Records, Kalox, Wagon Wheel Records and ESP Records. He has a wonderful voice and smooth style that is a pleasure to dance to.

The High Country Squares offers weekly dances, regional dances and a wonderful sense of community for local and visiting dancers. Plus level practice starts at 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Mondays, followed by Mainstream and Plus club dancing from 7:30 to 9:15. Contact Lorna at 731-5525 for more information.