29 May 1930 - 11 Jun 2021
Dear friend and club supporter, Raleigh Wieand has passed away. In the early years, Raleigh was one of the first 'straight' callers to support and help Puddletown. He remained active with the club, attending many of our monthly dances with his late wife Joanne.
Joanne's badge is already on the Memorial panels, and we will add his at the next in person convention.
He and Joanne were two of the few people named "Permanent Members" of our club. Many of our folks attended his monthly dances at Promenade Center as well as the workshops in his living room in West Seattle.
He was a square dance treasure and will be truly missed.
— Puddletown Squares
Jack was calling an Advanced dance recently, and my square was having trouble so I yelled out, "Wait! Wait!" Jack looked at my square and said, "What do you think this is--a tape group? You want me to pause the tape?"
Newer dancers have probably never heard of a tape group. When a group of dancers want to learn or workshop square dance moves and they do not have a caller, the next best thing is to learn from taped lessons or dances. There is a tape leader who runs the tape (MP3s nowadays) and is the expert on what is on the tape. We have callers in Washington state that can teach and call B51 to C1. But when it gets to C2 and higher, the dancers meet weekly to dance to recorded material when there are no available callers.
The Story of the Seattle Tape Worms (taken from "Seattle Tape Worms" article in Zip Coder magazine, December 2007):
In the 1970's when Raleigh Wieand was stationed in San Antonio, he started his Advanced and Challenge square dance tape group, the San Antonio Tape Worms. When he got out of the service and moved to Seattle in 1976, he started the Seattle Tape Worms. Over the years a few groups asked to use the Tape Worm badges, but with different colors:
-San Antonio Tape Worms--Brown (Everything is Brown in Texas)
-Olympia Tape Worms--George and Wilma Jensen--Red (the capitol of Washington--all red tape)
-Spokane Tape Worms--Jim and Barb Blencoe--Lilac (Spokane--the lilac city)
-Central Coast Tape Worms--George adn Elaine True--Orange (California poppy, the state flower)
-Seattle Tape Worms--Green (Seattle--the Emerald City)
-Virginia--Virginia Wolf--Raliegh never got to see theirs
Over the next 2 decades, he had grown from 3 squares to more than 20 squares in his Seattle tape group. During those days and up till 2002 he brought in a live caller every third weekend for a weekend consisting of one Plus dance, two Advanced dances, two C1 dances and one C2 dance. He also made copies of dances and shipped them all over the world to other tape groups until 2006.
Raleigh has kept The Tape Worms alive all these years, although now he does the calling and has a couple of squares at his home twice a week. At a recent Seattle Tape Worms reunion dinner, only one dancer in attendance, Dorothy Abbott, had been with him since the beginning. For the past 40 years, the Tape Worms has been a huge part of higher level square dancing history in Seattle. We can't thank you enough Raleigh, for all you have done for square dancing and the great memories you have given us.
— Thal Critchley
Horrible news today.... one of the greatest influences in my life when it comes to square dancing, Raleigh Wieand has passed away this morning at 5:30am. My Brother from another mother Jeff Wieand contacted me this morning to deliver the devastating news. Raleigh was responsible for getting me access to some of the best calling talent in the world over the 30 years that I knew him. I considered him and his wife Joanne to be my American Parents. They were with me on my first calling gig in Germany and were there like Proud parents watching me work with my #1 favorite caller Dave Wilson, which Raleigh was the one who introduced me to him. He was a great friend and mentor for me... But he was also a great example for how to live my life... Just like me he was a single father to Jeff Wieand, Diane Peach and Russell along with a step daughter Joyce Jackson... He found the love of his life at a later stage in life and that inspires me too. Raleigh will be missed... He was the reason Seattle was a driving force in square dancing for the past 40 years.... He would have been 92... but he was sick a year..
— Bryan Clark
We are so sorry to hear this sad news.....he was such a great person and we all need to respect his efforts in improving our recreation....he always was a gracious person to us respecting our efforts in bringing good training to dancers. He remarked that it takes a village to educate results good training leading to advanced dancing for those desiring.
— Linda Berka
He is finally together again with his beloved Joanne 💕
— Anne Uebelacker
Raleigh (R) and his good friend Bryan Clark