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StuckOnSalsa All Star Salsa Cruise 2006
By Marques Gunter
Posted Dec 23, 2006

What would be the perfect vacation for a salsero? How about a 5 day cruise on the Gulf on Mexico, beaches, non-stop salsa parties and dancing with the all stars of salsa. Myself and a handful of Indianapolis salsa dancers attending the StuckOnSalsa All Star Salsa Cruise 2006 which was a fun and memorable experience. Here is a not so brief summary of the the 5 day cruise.

Thursday - All Aboard!
After boarding the cruise ship, the Enchantment of the Sea, we discovered that StuckOnSalsa already started a salsa party on the pool deck. None of us had our dance shoes because we were still waiting to get our luggage, but it did not stop us from having a good time. Later that evening we gather in one of the banquet rooms for information and introduction. They also had an impromptu Jack and Jill dance contest. Why? We think they did it as a distraction because we were suppose to get champagne and a fruit basket in our rooms, but never did. The night was finished with another salsa party in one of the ship's lounge.

Friday - Key West Florida
Our first port was Key West Florida. The ship was only docked till 2pm and did not give us enough time to enjoy our experience there. Last night most of us danced till 4am and did not get up till 11am or noon. There was social dancing on the deck during the day and in the lounge at night. There were performances that evening and the one performances that was my personal favorite was from the Masacote Dance Company (Ana and Joel). The performance (video clip)was around 4 minutes which is longer then most Latin performances, but I was entertain and engaged for the entire time, it is a must see!

Saturday - Cozumel, Mexico
Saturday morning the ship docked at Cozumel, Mexico and this time we were docked till 6:30pm giving us time to visit the beach. Before I headed to the beach I took a 3 hour On2 (Mambo) boot camp workshop. I only attended the first 2 hours, but I did get a grasp of the fundamentals (right turn anyone?). Recently I have been interested in learning how do dance On2 and I have a video comparison of both On1 and On2 dancing in my blog for those who want to learn more about On2 dancing. Their was a beach party hosted by StuckOnSalsa. They provided us free drinks and food at the bar and A live salsa band from Puerto Rico! The band started 40 minutes late, but it was not big deal, most of us were taking advantage of the beautiful beach, water activities and salseras in 2 piece bathing suits. The band played at the bar located on the beach. When there was no room to dance in the bar, we danced in the sand. Later that evening on the ship there were performances, but I was so tried out I ended up skipping them and used that time to take a power nap for the social dancing later that night.

Sunday - More Workshops and the Wall
I decided to take a body isolation workshop. Overall some good stuff, I learn some body isolations before at the 2006 Chicago salsa congress, but never applied it to my dancing. This time I will motivate myself to take what I have learned and start applying it on the dance floor, hopefully I do not look like a fool during the learning process. There was wall climbing contest that I decided to enter. I ended up getting second place and was timed at 11 seconds. Shaka Brown from took first at 9 seconds, Shaka I am looking for my rematch! I got the opportunity to dance with Eddie the Salsa Freak during the deck party. I was hoping that my friends were going to video tape it, but they were occupied at the time.

There you have it, overall a very good time. I got to dance with advance and professional dancers and cruising on the open sea was a new and fun experience for me. I would like to mention that this cruise was heavy influenced by On2 (mambo) dancers. I will not go into whole debate on On1 vs. On2 dancing, but being with so many On2 dancers it helped give me a great deal of appreciation for On2 dancing and their primary focus on social dancing and less on performance and competition dancing which is heavy associated with On1 dancing. I am now interested in continuing my On2 education and seeing where it takes me. If you ask if I would go on another salsa cruise, my answer will be yes and where do I register. To everyone who could not make it, I hope to see you at the next salsa cruise, till next time keep dancing.

Check out the video clips that I posted from the crusie!

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