Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Why are tickets so expensive?

Costs are rising. DCLX has lost money at every DCLXtra since Covid. One of our most significant expenditures is music. Musicians who play for swing dancers do so as a labor of love; no swing dance musician is making a great profit from playing for nonprofit swing dance organizations like DCLX. We are unwilling to exploit the musicians in this field and we want to keep bringing in the talented musicians you love.

We do offer volunteering options to offset costs. Each of our volunteers is offered a pass discount of $15 (by means of a cash rebate at the end of a shift) for an hour of work helping us put on this great event. It’s possible to volunteer an hour for each dance, which would allow a volunteer to earn back more than 75% of the flash sale price.

Why is everything at Glen Echo?

Venue decisions are based on a balance of cost, convenience, and capacity (but mostly capacity). There are not very many venues in the DC area that allow for live music and adequate dance space. While DC is full of a rich history of jazz music and swing dancing and we would love to feature more of those historically influential venues, and while DCLX past has used other indoor venues, doing so in 2024 would mean limiting the number of passes we can sell. The Spanish Ballroom at Glen Echo can hold around 800 dancers (and DCLX 2023 sold out for the Saturday night dance!)—no other venue in town can boast such a large and beautiful dance space to ensure as many people as possible can enjoy the excellent live music and quality dancing DCLX strives to host.

While there are other venues in the DC area that physically could support our space needs, they are either cost prohibitive and/or would require us to drastically change the structure of the event, such as a hotel takeover.

Why doesn’t DCLX hold late night blues in the Glen Echo Bumper Car Pavilion?

Glen Echo has a noise curfew. The surrounding neighborhood includes residences, and therefore Glen Echo does not allow music in the Bumper Car Pavilion past 11:30pm.

Why doesn’t DCLX have classes or workshops?

DCLX stands for DC Lindy Exchange. A lindy exchange is traditionally a weekend hosted by a particular city with an opportunity to social dance with lindy hoppers from surrounding regions, the host country, and around the globe. Traditionally, lindy exchanges do not involve classes, competitions, or workshops. DCLX is proud to dedicate its efforts to hosting an annual exchange allowing for as much social dancing as possible to high quality live swing music.

How does DCLX decide what food will be available?

DCLX’s agreement with Glen Echo does not allow us to sell food and beverage items. DCLX’s permit for public spaces (like Dupont Circle) does not allow us to sell, invite to sell, or distribute food or beverage items.

We have a good relationship with Praline Cafe, the cafe adjoining the Glen Echo Spanish Ballroom. Praline Cafe is excited to provide sandwiches, pastries, chips, candy, cold drinks, beer, wine, coffee, and maybe even hot food options to DCLX attendees during each of our dances. They’ll stay open as long as there are customers.

DCLX requests permission from Glen Echo to invite food trucks to select dances. Bringing in food trucks requires DCLX to guarantee a minimum payment for each truck. In 2023, the food trucks did not meet their minimums. This is part of the calculation in deciding if, how many, and which trucks to invite for 2024. If you like having food truck options at DCLX, please buy their food! DCLX provides limited snacks between the main dances and late night dances on Friday and Saturday. Food distribution (at no charge) must meet all National Public Health Service guidelines and be pre-approved by Glen Echo. Our decisions about available snacks are informed by those guidelines, safety considerations (including risk profiles and Covid), and the realities and conveniences of feeding over 500 people.

Can DCLX help me find housing?

DCLX hosts a housing Facebook group: This group is to connect locals with out-of-town dancers and for visiting dancers to connect with each other to form shared housing groups (e.g., hotel, Airbnb, etc.). The DCLX committee will be moderating this group. When posting to request or offer housing, please let folks know your preferences as far as lifestyle (e.g., do you stay out until the late-night ends) and COVID precautions. COVID highlighted that everyone has a different risk profile, and we feel that inviting someone into your house (or being invited into someone’s home) is best handled individually instead of via DCLX’s coordination.

Why is there a charge for Sunday afternoon?

Hosting two free dances in one weekend became untenable for us. In weighing the options of having another free dance with only DJ’d music, or charging for Sunday afternoon and being able to feature another band, we chose to highlight even more excellent live music.

Why can’t I buy merchandise at the dance? Why do I have to make all of my purchases on the website?

DCLX holds its dances on property that falls under the National Park Service restrictions. One of those restrictions is that t-shirts and apparel cannot be sold on federal property.

What about other merchandise? Glen Echo takes a 20% cut of any merchandise (apart from apparel) that we sell at Glen Echo. Our permit for use of public space (like Dupont Circle) does not allow us to sell, or give anyone else permission to sell, merchandise on that property.

However, we are allowed to distribute merchandise that was purchased pre-sale. Therefore, make sure you get your orders in early!

Why do we have to clear out of the ballroom between the main and late night dances?

Part of the venue charges from Glen Echo are based on the number of dancers we have in the venue at a particular dance. Late night dances are separate events from main dances with separate payments to the venue. Clearing out the ballroom allows for us to gather an accurate headcount for late-night attendees.

Clearing out the ballroom also gives our musicians and sound technicians the opportunity to change over bands and equipment and conduct a sound check without interference.

Why are there dividers in the main room during late night dances?

The Spanish Ballroom is huge! As the night goes on and people head home, the dividers allow us to make the space feel full and help keep the energy going.

Why didn’t DCLX hire [this band I want to dance to]?

Simply put, finite resources. There are only so many hours in a day and there are more bands that we would love to hire than we have slots to fill (or sound technicians to support)! We try to find a balance between supporting our immediate local musicians, hiring bands that we’ve had a long standing history with, and spotlighting musicians who have yet to play at DCLX.

It’s a wonderful problem to have that there are more wonderful bands than we can possibly hire in one year.