2018-2019 Cotillion Member Rules 

Cotillion Club 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 first-year Cotillion Members at the August 19th  Orientation is MANDATORY. Failure to attend could be grounds for termination of your child’s membership. 

4. Members must R.S.V.P. 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 ASAP, as long as it is before 3:00 P.M. on the day of the event to avoid an infraction. 

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. 

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, socks, belt, and leather-sole 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. 


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 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. Undergarments must not be visible. Ladies may not wear shorts, pants or hats.

c) Dress hemlines MUST extend BEYOND one’s fingertips, including while dancing and twirling during dance lessons.

d) 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 have the privilege of inviting a guest to Cotillion dinner dances. 

a)  A fee of $65 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 R.S.V.P. 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 is not tolerated. 

c)  Members may not chew gum. 

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

e)  No electronic devices (including, but not limited to, cell phones, cameras, Apple watches, iPods, camcorders, etc.) are permitted at the dance. 

f) Failure to comply with these Rules of Conduct may result in refusal of admittance or removal from any Cotillion function. After two (2) Rules of Conduct infractions, the Board reserves the right to remove him/her from membership. 

10.MEMBERS SHALL NOT USE INTOXICANTS BEFORE OR DURING A COTILLION EVENT. Cotillion Club of Sarasota has a zero-tolerance policy for the use or consumption of drugs, alcohol, tobacco, or electronic cigarettes. 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 designate a Member under the influence of an intoxicant. The offending Member’s parents will be called to escort the Member from the event; the Member shall be removed from Cotillion membership. 

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

b)  Cotillion Board Members 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 in to your account with updates to your address, email, or phone on our website at www.SarasotaCotillion.org

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. Repeated infractions may result in the removal of Cotillion membership. 

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

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