Log in

Cotillion Member Rules

  • Cotillion Club of Sarasota Inc. expects Members to adhere to a set of standards which reflects the Club’s emphasis on good manners and proper etiquette. Members are expected to follow these rules and to wear appropriate attire at Cotillion events as specified on each invitation. Please review the rules that detail our expectations of behavior, dress and attendance.

    1.    Members are expected and encouraged to cooperate in meeting other members, participating in the etiquette lesson(s), dancing, and actively contributing to the success of the semi-formal dining and dancing events.

    2.    Cotillion membership is not transferable from one person to another. 

    3.    Attendance by incoming 8th Graders and all other first-year Cotillion Members at the New Member Orientation is MANDATORY. Failure to attend could be grounds for termination of your child’s membership.

    4.    Members must RSVP in writing for each dinner dance by the due date shown on the invitation. 

    a)     If a member is unable to attend a dance when they RSVP’d they would, they must call the Reservations Chair immediately. Please phone as soon as possible. As long as it is before 3:00 P.M. on the day of the event, an infraction will not be issued. 

    b)     In the event that a member must arrive late or leave early from the event, arrangements must be made prior to the event between the Member’s parent and the Reservations Chair to avoid an infraction.  A board member must speak to a parent before being released early.

    5.    No member will be admitted after 30 minutes past the start of the dance unless prior arrangements have been made with the Reservations Chair.

    6.    Members should plan to arrive at the dance on time in order to register and greet their hosts. No member shall be admitted into the dance early. 

    7.    Dress Code 


a)     Gentlemen must wear: a TRADITIONAL suit or jacket with dress slacks*, button-down dress shirt with collar, tie, dress socks, belt, and dark soled dress shoes, unless otherwise specified on the invitation. 

b)     Gentlemen may not wear: jeans, corduroy slacks, a collarless shirt, T-shirt, hats, canvas shoes, suede bucks, boat shoes or boots. Novelty suits and accessories are not appropriate. 

c)     During the event, gentlemen may not remove their coat, tie, or shoes.  Shirts must remain tucked in.

*Khaki colored dress slacks are acceptable, but casual khakis, aka chinos, are not acceptable Cotillion attire. 

  • Ladies:

a)     Ladies must wear: a CONSERVATIVE, semi-formal or formal dress and dress shoes, unless otherwise specified on the invitation. 

b)     Ladies may not wear a dress that: has a bare midriff, is short and/or tight, is bodycon, has a plunging neckline or a neckline that is too revealing, is low-cut in the back (no lower than bra line), or has any cutouts in the material below the chest level/bra line, even if covered by mesh or lace. Undergarments must not be visible. Ladies may not wear shorts, pants or hats.

c)     Dress hemlines MUST extend BEYOND one’s longest fingertip while shoulders are relaxed at all times including but not limited to dancing and twirling. 

d)     Please refrain from wearing any dress that would be considered a type of "club" dress.

e)     No hats or sunglasses.

f)     Ladies may not wear flip-flops (flat, backless sandals), boots or booties. All shoes including heels, flat soled shoes, including wedges, must have a back or an ankle strap. Ladies may only dance with acceptable shoes. (They can bring appropriate, comfortable shoes to dance in, but they will need to change their shoes in the restroom.) 

Cotillion Board Members will determine the appropriateness of attire at each dance in their sole discretion at any time during the dance. If a Board Member concludes the attire is inappropriate, the Cotillion Member choices are: 

  •   i.        Parents return with appropriate attire prior to 8:00 PM. 

     ii.        Ladies: If the dress is deemed too short, wear a slip skirt provided; if the dress is deemed too revealing, wear a shawl provided. The slip skirt and/or shawl must be worn the entire evening. Gentlemen: Wear the tie or suit jacket (offered by Cotillion). 

     iii.        Decide not to attend the dance, at which point the parent is contacted for Member pick up. 

    8.    Senior Cotillion Guests – Only Senior Cotillion Members (11thand 12thgraders) based on available space have the privilege of inviting a guest to Cotillion dinner dances.

    a)     A fee of $70 is required to cover the cost of the guest’s dinner. A check (no cash) and a signed Behavior Expectations Form must be mailed/received with the Member’s RSVP card by the Reservations Chair prior to the event. 
    b)     The Senior Cotillion Member must accompany his/her guest to the sign-in area. Guests must present a photo I.D. and provide an emergency contact phone number before admission to the dance. 
    c)     Guests must be a high school student and will be required to abide by all Cotillion rules. The Senior Cotillion Member is responsible for their guest’s behavior and attire.
    d)     Former Members who have been removed from membership may not attend Cotillion events as a guest. If a Senior Cotillion Member’s guest does not adhere to the Rules of Cotillion, the Cotillion Member will receive an infraction letter.

    9.    General Rules of Conduct 

    a)     Proper behavior is expected (i.e.: do not sit on a Member’s lap, no inappropriate dancing, no foul or obscene language, etc.). 

    b)     Bullying of any kind is not tolerated. 

    c)     Members may not chew gum. 

    d)     Cell phones are not permitted inside of a dance.  Telephone calls and texting are not permitted during the event, except under a chaperone’s supervision. 

    e)     Use of electronic devices (including, but not limited to, cell phones, cameras, Apple watches, iPods, camcorders, etc.) are not permitted at the dance. 

    10.  MEMBERS SHALL NOT USE INTOXICANTS BEFORE OR DURING A COTILLION EVENT. Cotillion Club of Sarasota Inc. has a zero-tolerance policy for the use or consumption of drugs, alcohol, tobacco, or electronic cigarettes ( i.e. vaping or Juuling). Members who appear to be under the influence will not be admitted nor allowed to stay at a Cotillion event. Board Members have in their sole discretion the ability to remove a Member from the dance. The offending Member’s parents will be called to escort the Member from the event; the Member shall be removed from Cotillion membership.

    a)     The Cotillion Board Members and/or the on duty officers reserve the right to search handbags and/or gentlemen’s jackets for both precautionary measures and suspected violation of Cotillion rules.

    b)     The Cotillion Board Members and/or the on duty officers reserve the right to monitor restrooms for precautionary measures and suspected violations of Cotillion rules.

    11.  The Board of Directors is not responsible for lost articles. 

    12.  Members are not allowed to leave the venue of an event until the close of the dance. Leaving a Cotillion function without authorization from a Board Member will result in automatic termination of Membership. 

    13.  Cotillion events are chaperoned by Cotillion Board Members. For liability reasons parents may not enter the premises of the dance to watch their children, pick them up early or for any other purpose. Parents must wait outside to pick up their child at the conclusion of the dance.

    14.  Members must be picked up promptly at the end of the dance. The use of public transportation (taxi, limousine, etc.) is discouraged. Should this be required, it is necessary that you notify the Reservations Chair prior to the dance. Cotillion Board Members are not responsible for Members after the dance. 

    15.  The Board of Directors reserves the right to remove from its membership and deny future membership to anyone whose actions and/or behavior is detrimental to proper social conduct, manners and/or property damage at an event. No portion of the offending Member’s dues will be refunded.

    16.  The Board of Directors reserves the right to deny any guest future membership or guest privileges whose actions and behavior are detrimental to proper and social conduct and good manners. 

    17.  It is the Member’s responsibility to keep account information current. Please log into your account with updates to your address, email, or phone on our website at

    18.  Membership fees are non-refundable.

    Any Member who does not follow the Cotillion Rules above may receive an infraction letter from the Cotillion Board. It is the Member’s responsibility to respond in writing to the infraction letter by the date indicated in the infraction letter. Failure to respond within the allotted time will cause future Cotillion dance invitations to be withheld. Infractions may result in the removal of Cotillion membership.



Core Values


The showing of politeness in one’s attitude and behavior toward others.

Really big people are, above everything else, courteous, considerate, and generous - - not just to some people in some circumstances - - but to everyone all the time. 

Thomas J. Watson


The quality of being honest and having strong moral principles; moral uprightness.

One of the truest tests of integrity is its blunt refusal to be compromised.

Chinua Achebe


A feeling of deep admiration for someone or something elicited by their abilities, qualities, or achievements.

Respect for ourselves guides our morals, respect for others guides our manners.

Laurence Sterne


The quality of being friendly, generous, and considerate.

Kindness in words creates confidence.

Kindness in thinking creates profoundness.

Kindness in giving creates love.

Lao Tzu


The fact or condition of being accountable; responsibility. An obligation or willingness to accept responsibility or to account for one’s actions.

At the end of the day we are accountable to ourselves – our success is a result of what we do.

Catherine Pulsifer


The quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.

Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.

Melody Beattie


Cotillion Club of Sarasota, Inc.
P.O. Box 19171
Sarasota , FL 34276-2171

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software