• On the AOE entry “What do Amish do for fun?“, one reader asked if Amish like to dance.  Well, good question.  I guess do they like to dance, versus do they actually dance are two different things.  We’d have to do a poll, I suppose.  If anyone saw that classic study of Amish life, the comedy film “For Richer and Poorer”, there is of course the famous barn hoe-down Amish dance scene.  Yee-ha!  On a more serious note, singing is popular and widely practiced among Amish, while dancing is not, at least among adults.  Some Amish youth may dance in social situations;  our friend Richard Stevick details the “Amish square dance” in his book Growing Up Amish: The Teenage Years.  The name for this dance in the most conservative Lancaster County youth groups is ring spiele.  Professor Stevick explains that some dances are performed “to the accompaniment of a harmonica or simply danced to the unaccompanied singing of the young people or to a caller.” (Growing Up Amish, p. 146).
  • You may remember a few weeks back I asked for help in figuring out a tagline for this blog.  Thanks for all your great suggestions.   One in particular struck me.  Paula offered up “Exploring Amish Culture, Coast-to-Coast”.  I think I’ll be going with a modified version, “Exploring Amish Culture and Communities”.  Why is it not up already?  Well, seems like it would be easy to stick a single line under the title and get it too look right, but it’s not, at least for me.  Working on that.
  • A friend passed a news story on to me yesterday, which I’m still scratching my head over.  Apparently a “delegation of Amish” traveled to the Holy Land to meet with Jewish leaders.  There they “offered a parchment with the request of forgiveness in the name of the entire Amish community.”  The reason?  “Their group’s silence during the Nazi’s extermination of Jews during the Holocaust.”  I have to say, this is not one I saw coming.  Apparently these folks are not your standard dyed-in-the-wool Amish, which you might guess from the flying in planes and outreach website some in the group operate.
  • If you’ve got a second, I could use your vote!  Or rather, my book could.  Small Business Trends is running a contest for business book of the year.  You can vote for Success Made Simple: An Inside Look at Why Amish Businesses Thrive here; just click on the blue “VOTE” button.  I’m in 11th place right now;  the top 10 books win.   Voting lasts til Dec 15th; voters are even allowed to vote once per day until then.  Many thanks!
  • Photo of the day: I know it’s still technically autumn, but the place I live just got nailed with a huge blast of snow.  So in honor of the approaching freeze, a shot from near Scio, in Carroll County, Ohio:

amish snow buggyPhoto credit: Jim Goings

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