Group Aims to Dance Across the Walkway
A drive is under way to get 3,000 people to dance the Hokey Pokey on the Walkway Over the Hudson in hopes of setting a world record.
June 9 is when the Walkway group hopes to shatter the Guinness World Record set in June 2008 by 2,350 Estonians performing the “Toe Dance,” an Estonian folk dance.
An event kicking off the drive to register the 3,000 participants was held Monday at the Highland entrance to the pedestrian bridge connecting the Ulster County hamlet with the City of Poughkeepsie. Because of windy conditions, the demonstration by 14 local students was moved from the center of the walkway to the Highland entrance.
“It was pretty fun and it definitely warmed me up,” said Mairead Lenihan, a junior at Marist College in Poughkeepsie.
Elizabeth Waldstein-Hart, executive director of the nonprofit Walkway group, said the fundraising event on June 9 would create a line of dancers more than a mile long. The 1.28-mile walkway is the longest elevated pedestrian bridge in the world.
“What a spectacular sight — the longest line of people on the world’s longest pedestrian bridge,” Waldstein-Hart said.
Onell Harvey, a Poughkeepsie High School senior and one of the participants Monday, said he learned the Hokey Pokey, a favorite traditional dance at weddings and bar mitzvahs, at Hyde Park Roller Magic. Students from Beacon and Highland high schools and Dutchess Community College also participated in the demonstration.