Opening Night at The Blakeney Dance Hall 1954

Opening Night at The Blakeney Dance Hall 1954


Mr. Harry Nontell had the grand opening of his new dancing pavilion last Friday night and it drew a tremendous crowd. There were people there from all over the country and parking space had to be arranged for an adjoining field. ‘ The dance hall was converted from the former Blakeney cheese factory (read-Rosebank Cheese Factory) which stood on the shore of the Mississippi River near the north end of the bridge.

It was a substantial building and Mr. Nontell used the main part of it to put down a very fine hardwood floor for dancing. At the side is a refreshment booth and space for people waiting to dance. Pleasantly Located The location is a very pleasant one as the river is wide at this point said there are beautiful falls just below the bridge. Fishing is good in the vicinity and Mr. Nontell proposes to have boats for hire when he gets around to it.

Rosebank was the name before Blakeney- Blakeney cheese factory (read-Rosebank Cheese Factory)

Most of the work of turning the factory into a hall where entertainments can be held was done oy Mr. Nontell himself in the winter months, assisted by his son, Orville, who was home from the West. Harry is a handy man at work of that kind and the floor, fixtures and other alterations are certainly a credit to him. He has made arrangements with Charlie Finner and his popular Hayshakers orchestra to furnish the music. Not only is Charlie a wizard on the violin, but he has no peers when it comes to calling off for the squares.

The crowd on opening night was an orderly one and there was no rough staff in spite of its size. The only unusual incident we heard about concerned a well known young Almonte lady who stepped into a hollow where there was wet clay. She walked right out of her high heeled shoes arid had to wade to dry ground in her stocking feet. Being redheaded and possessed of a temper when riled, she is said to have used a naughty word as she waded back to fish out her pumps.

“Where are all the d—— Sir Walter Raleighs around here?” inquired the damsel plaintively. “The age of chivalry is dead.

In addition to a weekly dance, Mr. Nontell is prepared to rent the hall for private dances, entertainments and receptions. He already has it booked for a number of engagements. It is understood Mr. Nontell has rented the field next to his pavilion and will control the parking himself in future.

Pockets of Paradise: Blakeney — Marilyn Snedden

Dance Hall Fire Blakeney

The Hayshakers — Charlie Finner

The Dawn Patrol on Local Dance Halls

Chicks at the Cedar Inn?

Cruisin Through the Dance Halls- From Carleton Place and Beyond!! Larry Clark

Clippings of Hank Snow

Dance Hall Days with The Coachmen

Down At the Twist and Shout–Wave’s Inn

Straight Outta Carleton Place High School — Wava McDaniel Baker

Lanark County Dance Halls 1950s, 60s & 70s

by arlenestaffordwilson

Good Old Lanark County Music–From the 70s to now

Documenting Clippings of the Gatineau Clog

Clippings and Memories of Mac Beattie — The Buchanan Scrapbooks

Memories of Bob Whitney and his Wobbleboard Carleton Place

Memories About Bernie Costello

Remembering Etta Whitney Carleton Place

Reserve Me a Table –The Silver Fox –Ron McMunn

Good Old Lanark County Music–From the 70s to now

Fiddling in Lanark County by David Ennis

Looking for Info on The Happy Wanderers etc.

The Hayshakers — Charlie Finner

All About Lorraine Lemay –Mississippi Hotel

About lindaseccaspina

Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda was a fashion designer, and then owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa on Rideau Street from 1976-1996. She also did clothing for various media and worked on “You Can’t do that on Television”. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off on American media she finally found her calling. She is a weekly columnist for the Sherbrooke Record and documents history every single day and has over 6500 blogs about Lanark County and Ottawa and an enormous weekly readership. Linda has published six books and is in her 4th year as a town councillor for Carleton Place. She believes in community and promoting business owners because she believes she can, so she does.

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