Mountain Empire Shag Society
Mountain Empire Shag Society (commonly known as MESS) was loosely formed in late 1991 by a group of people
who loved the shag dance, the music, & the lifestyle surrounding the music & the dance. MESS had its first
annual meeting in December 1992, & from there we have just kept growing year by year.
MESS was accepted as a regular member into the Association of Carolina Shag Clubs in 1996. The ACSC is the
national association that serves the purpose of perpetuating the shag dance & the music. To find out more
about the ACSC, check out their website at www.shagdance.com.
MESS has grown from only a few members in 1991 to over 100 members at the present time.
We promote the shag dance, the music associated with the dance,
the friendships generated by the dance & the music, the continued existence
of the dance & the music, & the lifestyle of the shag dance world.
When We Meet
The club meets every Monday (except holidays) in the Reflections Lounge & Restaurant at Holiday Inn in
Johnson City, Tennessee, & the music starts at 7pm. We provide free basic shag lessons around 8pm in the
hallway next to the lounge. Larry "Bigfish" Calhoun & Gary "Big Daddy" Combs are our club DJs. A typical
Monday night will have 50 to 70 people in attendance & is naturally filled with shag music along with a couple
songs for line dances. Things tend to wind down around 10pm because the DJs have "real" jobs they must deal
with on Tuesday morning.
The lounge has a full-service bar & waitress. You can order a number of appetizers along with a full compliment
of dinners if you're really hungry. Their food is really good & competitively priced. Their drink prices are about
average for a restaurant bar. If you're really picky about your drink, "top shelf" mixes are available.
We hope to see YOU on Monday nights!
We typically have four parties each year. Three of them are one-day events not heavily advertised. We have a
winter party in mid-March, a summer party in August, & a Christmas party in December. These parties are
typically FREE for members in good standing & a reasonable charge for non-members. The party includes beer,
wine, setups, MESS-aholic punch, & primary food. The members are asked to bring a covered dish of some sort
to add variety to the meal. You will be overwhelmed at the wonderful assortment of salads, side items, &
desserts that the members bring.
Annual two-day Fall Bash party in October
This is our annual two-day party that is held in October.
It is limited to 216 people, & we have sold out the last SIX years.
For 2013, the party sold out in THREE days in February when tickets went on sale.
See the MESS Parties page for the details about this party.
It's a really fun event, & you won't want to miss the Fall Bash after you've attended the first time.
Hope to see YOU at the Fall Bash!
SOS - What is it????
Well, SOS is correctly known as Society of Stranders & came about in the early 1980's because of a desire of old
beach bums, life guards, hot dog vendors, umbrella attendants, & various other teenager beach maniacs from
the 50's & 60's to have a reunion. The first one was an overwhelming success & has grown immensely over the
years to what it is today. None of the original bunch had a clue that it would turn out to be the huge event it is
in this day & time.
What it is today?
SOS now happens three times a year in the Main Street area of North Myrtle Beach (uhhh, that's South Carolina
if you ain't from around here). These are the ultimate shag & beach parties because they are happening in
several shag clubs over the span of several days.
Spring Safari typically starts on the 3rd Friday of April & ends 10 days later on Sunday. The participating clubs
have various functions during this time with live bands, shag contests, & on the last Saturday, they have the
SOS Spring Safari Parade. This parade is the most outrageous thing you'll see with the exception of Mardi Gras
in New Orleans. It's a lot like our Fun Fest parade, but it's geared more toward an adult audience & also geared
to the shag dance & the music. It is a wonderful spring celebration that you surely don't want to miss!!!
Fall Migration typically starts on the 3rd Friday of September, & like Spring Safari, ends 10 days later on Sunday.
Same clubs do the same things as they did in the spring without the parade. The big difference is Fun Sunday &
Fun Monday. Both days feature live Carolina beach & R&B bands outdoors. Fun Sunday is held on 1st Avenue
right beside O.D. Arcade & Lounge (Bigfish's hangout & DJ place). Fun Monday is held right in the middle of
Main Street (yeah, the street is blocked off to protect the drivers). These events are similar to our Fun Fest
concerts because they are all about bringing lawn chairs & blankets. Once again, it's another grand celebration,
& a great way to wind down the end of summer.
At one time this party was only for ACSC shag club members, but it's popularity eventually changed it into a
mini-SOS. It typically takes place starting on the 2nd Thursday of January & only lasts until the following Sunday.
The big thing here is...the party is intense!!! Everything is compacted into just a few days, & it is wide open.
Again, it's a great way to celebrate...whatever you want to celebrate.
You must have an SOS card to attend these events. You can get them from our club secretary or from the
ACSC. See our secretary for more information. The SOS card costs $30 per year thru the club or $35 per year at
the beach. It is good from Jan to Dec & can get you lots of good discounts at various businesses in the shag
We sell raffle tickets to support an SOS children's charity & to cover the costs of having the LIVE bands at Fun
Sunday & Fun Monday. Be sure to buy one from our club officers who sell them. You have really goods odds
(especially compared to state / national lotteries) of winning several thousand dollars, keeping the great beach /
R&B bands coming & supporting a wonderful children's charity.
THE ACSC SHAGGING ICON AWARD
The purpose of the Icon Award is to recognize individuals who have made outstanding contributions within
their own local (Full Member, A.C.S.C.) shag club. Nominees for this award have made significant efforts and
contributions to their local shag club & are clearly outstanding members of the shag community. Although some
of these nominees may go on to be well known in the shag world (the A.C.S.C. or S.O.S., the C.S.A., the DJ
Association, etc.) many of these individuals may not be known outside of their own club. This award has come to
be one of the most highly prized awards that a shagger can attain.
Our shag club member, Larry Calhoun, received this award in 2008.
Click the link below to see more information about how the award is chosen &
to see the people who have been selected for the award since the inception.
ACSC Shagging Icon Awards & Members
|WEBSITE UPDATED Thursday, May 16, 2013
|2013 Mountain Empire Shag Society Fall Bash
October 18th and 19th
Completely SOLD OUT as of February 8, 2013
Go to the MESS parties page to get on the waiting list or sell tickets.
|Brenda and Wendel Boyd
2012 Lifetime Achievement Award