Selfies with Guy Lombardo kick off Musical Memories of Muskoka summer exhibit at Grace & Speed museum
GRAVENHURST — There were floats, paper bags for your flasks, lots of dancing, great big band music — and selfies with birthday boy Guy Lombardo.
The opening of the Musical Memories of Muskoka exhibit hit a high note at the Muskoka Boat and Heritage Centre here last night.
More than 100 invited guests previewed the musical showcase at Grace & Speed museum at the MuskokaWharf.
With Neil Barlow’s Muskoka Big Band blasting out all the hits by Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Stan Kenton, Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey and Glenn Miller, everyone’s dance card was full.
And the band even played Happy Birthday to Guy Lombardo, who would have been 112 that night, June 19.
Lombardo is a big part of the exhibit, which includes a lot of material from his museum in London, including his famous red jacket from the Royal Canadians.
The very well done displays by Anne Curley and her volunteer staff led by Pat Young and Mary Storey and helpers, has created a nostalgic look at where local residents and cottagers enjoyed music around the lakes and danced at the smallest to the largest resorts and dance halls.
A fabulous recreation of Dunn’s Pavilion — “Where all Muskoka danced — is the centerpiece, with lots of related items, including his old Marine Bar soda fountain. There’s uniform from one of the drug store and ice cream employees, an elegant dress, and pictures and stories galore.
There’s Hugh Clairmont and Sandsmen, Paul Anka and Rush who played the Kee to Bala, and map of the lakes with other band sites, including the 21 Club in Port Carling.
And there’s a great touch screen with stories and music about the big bands that played Dunn’s
A true trip down memory lane worth a few hours of your time.
It’s on until Oct. 31.
Visit the museum website at www.realmuskoka.com or call 705-687-2115 for admission prices and times.
And if you want to hear Barlow’s great band of Muskoka musicians, they move on to Huntsivlle Saturday night for a huge Huntsville Festival of the Arts dinner and dance on the Main Street for 500 people. The band kicks off at 8:30 — $10 to get on the dance floor ($100 for dinner).
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