National Hand Dance Association

The National Hand Dance Association (NHDA) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit membership organization whose mission is to preserve, educate and promote the art form of Hand Dance. Hand Dance is a contemporary swing style partner dance rooted in Lindy Hop and Swing. It is a 50 year cultural and traditional social dance indigenous to Washington DC and is considered the “Official Dance” of Washington DC by Resolution of the DC Council. NHDA is recognized by the Smithsonian Folk-Life Division as a folk and traditional art.  NHDA is a clearinghouse which supports and promotes all elements of hand dance including hand dance classes, social events, public outreach projects and presentations. NHDA also supports programs, activities and events sponsored by its individuals members, affiliate organizations and chapters. Various programs have a dual focus, i.e., promoting hand dancing as an art form and educating the public at large through its community service outreach. Hand dancing as an art form will be represented by the creation of a national archive  which preserves materials including tape-recorded oral histories, still photographs, video footage, memorabilia and other items which tell the story of hand dancing.  In addition, it is future plan to use these materials in school programs, publications, and exhibits to increase awareness..

RNS has been an “Affiliate” member since 2008. On behalf of NHDA, RNS has performed many showcases and demonstrations at venues such as Arena Stage, the Reeves Centers, DC Government, the United Temple Methodist Church, DC Mayor Gray’s Office, Anacostia Arts and Wellness Center, Velocity DC, and The Bernice Foneaun Senior Wellness Center. RNS received a 2-year contract (9/1/2010-9/30/2012) at the Congress Heights Senior Wellness Center and Hattie Holmes Senior Wellness Center (beginning 10/8/2014 to present) to conduct dance classes to Seniors.  In 2009, RNS received the Outstanding Award for “The Melting Pot of Dance: Emerging Star Award”.

All RNS Graduating Students receive a free one year “Honorary Affiliate Membership” in the National Hand Dance Association.