Highway Outlaws Ride onto the Ranch Stage

Barbara and Tom Wallis light up the dance floor in their Western wear at the SBR Social Dance Club monthly Western dance on May 9 in the Sol Ballroom. (Photo by Bob Authur)

Janelle Authur

If you want to hear and dance to some of the best Country Western bands in Tucson—live—without leaving the Ranch, come on down to the Sol Ballroom for the SBR Social Dance Club’s monthly Western dances. The club schedules bands that are well-known and respected in the Tucson music scene and regularly play in the greater Tucson area, Tombstone, Bisbee, Sierra Vista, Sonoita, and Coolidge. The bands play a wide variety of Country Western music so all dancers can step out to their favorite dances.

Highway Outlaws, a popular Tucson band that frequently plays at The Maverick and Whiskey Roads dance venues, made their first appearance on the Sol Ballroom stage on May 12. Seventy Ranch Western dancers donned their boots, hats, and jeans and had a boot stompin’ good time.

In addition to the two-step, waltzes, swing, line dances, and cha chas, dancers filled the floor for the Cowboy Cha Cha partner pattern dance, the Barn Dance, and the Western dances’ traditional end-of-evening partner pattern dance, “I Love You Arizona,” a tribute to our adopted state.

All the monthly Western dances feature a door prize, with entry requirements that change each month—such as cowboy boots or hats, or, for the May dance, wearing jeans. The May winner won a flight of Ranch beer.

All levels of dancers are welcome at the dances and newer dancers are encouraged to “come on down” and practice their newly acquired skills. Given the size of the dance floor, registration is limited to 90 dancers.

On Friday, July 14, a Ranch favorite, Wild Ride, will play. On Friday, Aug. 4, Patrick Rayl and the .357 Band return to the Ballroom stage. The Anthony Taylor Jr. Band and their song “long live the steel guitar” will kick off the fall dance season, playing at the Ranch for the first time. Most recently, the Anthony Taylor Jr. Band was a headliner for the annual Barn Dance at the 2023 Tucson Rodeo.

Clear Country returns on Friday, Oct. 13, with Patrick Rayl and the .357 Band bringing their music on Thursday, Nov. 9. Whiskey Riverdogs rounds out the dance year playing on Thursday, Dec. 7.

The club also sponsors rock ‘n’ roll and social dances featuring a live band or DJ, as well as a variety of ballroom and Western dance lessons. Western dance lessons include the two-step, Western waltz, swing, and partner pattern dances. On July 11, the Western dance lesson will be the ten-step partner pattern dance. Two-step and other lessons will resume in September.

For details on upcoming dances and lessons in 2023 and/or to register for the dances and lessons, go to the club’s website at www.sbrsbdc.club.

Information on the dances and lessons is emailed directly to club members and those on the club’s mailing list approximately four weeks before the dance and/or lesson’s start date. Details are also included on the club’s website and in the Ranch Reminder and Ranch events weekly newsletters. Registration opens four weeks before the event.