Swing Kat in Collegeville

Trying To Put Swing Kat In Collegeville

It has been awhile since my last update on our moving process.  For the past month or more I have been trying to make a deal to put Swing Kat in Collegeville.  Well, technically in Trappe PA near Collegeville.  In Trappe there is a church with a decent sized hall.  They have plentiful parking and it is along the main drag.  The floor is supported by wood floor joists however it is topped with Linoleum floor tiles. (sigh…)  This is where the trouble starts.

To put Swing Kat in Collegeville or anywhere else, there are a few things on my must have list.  This list includes… sufficient parking, 200-250 person capacity, great AC, moving air, hardwood flooring, a sprung floor if possible, a stage and high ceilings.  This is a tall order!  As I have been searching I have given in on several of these items to try and make a space work for us.  However still nothing has worked and I am still searching.

The church we have been dealing with is planning on redoing their floor in the next 2 years.  But, we don’t have 2 years and they don’t have the money to do it now.  This is why we were told by them this past week that they would not be able to take us on at this time.  Though we offered to purchase hardwood for their floor the cost of removing their old flooring will be extensive due to asbestos that must be removed.  In light of this deal breaker, I have offered instead to purchase flooring to lay overtop of their floors.  This would cause us to be able to use the space without expense on their end.  At this point I am waiting to hear if putting Swing Kat in Collegeville PA will be allowable.  The answer should come next week.

For many years I have told people that I did not want to make Swing Kat a non-profit.  I know most vintage swing dance groups like Swing Kat are non-profit, but I always believed that if dancers cared enough about having a place to swing dance in the Pottstown area that Swing Kat would make it.  I didn’t want to accept moneys from outside organizations in order to keep my hobby business going.  It just never felt right to me.  I just believed that the dancers would support our dancse and would support financially if needed. However what I have found in 8 1/2 years of running Swing Kat is that though our dancers support us, we still can’t get beyond state regulations concerning buildings that will be used for Assembly.  Now we have been stopped time and time again due to these regulations.  So though we have been successful, we will never be a success just holding dance events.  For this reason I have been reconsidering my stance on non-profit status.  Also, for this reason Swing Kat is now more of a dance studio than a dance venue.   Dance studios have the money to purchase permanent homes and don’t need expensive places that hold 250 people.  I believe at this point the dance venue I always wanted will only succeed as a non-profit or if someone with deep pockets hands us a building.  To this point Swing Kat has only existed due to the fact I didn’t need much to survive.  Before starting Swing Kat is was very smart with my money and invested in real estate.  Owning a triplex that I lived in gave me the financial flexibility to start Swing Kat and sustain it for many years.  Without this setup Swing Kat would have ended years ago.  However 2 years ago now I saw that Swing Kat had reach the “glass ceiling” at the Ballroom On High.  I saw that things would not get any better if we continued to rent at our current location.  This spurred me on into the madness that these past 2 years have been.

Will it be Swing Kat in Collegeville?  Only time will tell.  Stay tuned…