Ron Marion, Little T Squares Club Caller
Ron and wife Pat began western square dance lessons in 1972 while Ron was stationed at Ninth Naval District Headquarters in Great Lakes, Illinois. Upon Ron’s retirement with 20 years of service, they moved to Maryville so that he could finish his degree requirements at the University of Tennessee. During that period, Ron and Pat continued to be very active in the western square dance movement, becoming members of the Wagon Wheelers Square Dance Club, and regularly attending various club dances in the area, as well as Festivals in surrounding states.
It was during this time that Ron became interested in the calling side of square dancing. After calling several singing calls at various amateur nights in the area, he knew that the "Calling Bug" had bit him.
With the encouragement and help of Allen Tipton, and square dance friends who were members of the Wagon Wheelers, Ron began the task of learning to call. While many callers learn by establishing their own beginners square dance classes, Ron chose to practice on experienced dancers who were willing to assist in return for learning all the latest experimental and workshop material.(Furnishing refreshments didn't hurt either!!) During this time Ron earned his BS degree (with Honors) with a major in Transportation at UT, and decided to get a second degree with a major in Logistics, which he attained the following year. (Also With Honors)
In the meantime he became the Club Caller for the Smokey Mountain Promenaders as well as the Little "T" Squares and the Kerbela Squares, in addition to being on the staff of various weekend and week- long festivals in surrounding states. It was also during this period that Ron recorded square dance records on the Pioneer label, division of a long established label called Square Tunes. One of those records, "The Greatest American Hero" became a major seller in the square dance world in the year it was produced. After becoming a Manager for H&R Block, it became apparent that his schedule could no longer be maintained, and Ron now calls for only the Little "T" Squares, where he remains the only Club Caller they have had since they started the club.
Ron is a member and avid supporter of Callerlab, the professional organization for Western Square Dance Callers, and continues to be interested in the encouragement and training of new callers, one of whom he is mentoring at the present time.