THE HISTORY OF THE KINCARDINE PAVILION
In 1922, George Conley, a local architect and builder, decided that the people of Kincardine needed a better dance hall; the community had previously been using the old agricultural building at Connaught Park. George designed and helped to financially fund the costs for the erection of the new Pavilion. Although dances were being held at the Pavilion, it was ‘officially’ opened during the 1923 Old Boys and Girls Reunion, between July 16th to July 23rd of 1923.
The Town of Kincardine acquired the land on March 8, 1884, and continues to lease the land to each successive owner since that time.
The wooden structure does not have a basement and the floor itself was made of three layers of wood, the top layer being a high quality hardwood strip. In early years the floor was maintained by shaving blocks of paraffin wax onto the floor, and sprinkling the floor with cornmeal before the dances, to ensure ease of dancing and concurrently providing the floor with a protective coat. For many years, the Pavilion Dance hall was touted as having the best dance floor along the shores of Lake Huron.
The two balconies were originally constructed to provide space for bands, but due to increased popularity, the bands became too large to be accommodated on the balconies, and a stage was constructed on the south end of the building.
During the 1920’s dances were held as often as four times weekly during the months of July and August. There was a cost of 15 cents to enter the building, and 5 cents to go onto the dance floor. According to some, there was also a booth where a young lady could ‘rent’ a paper dress for the evening, as shorts were not permitted on the dance floor.
The Pavilion, being so very close the shore, has had to be shored up by gravel and stone many times in its history.
In 2000, The Friends of the Pavilion assumed the lease for the Kincardine Pavilion.As a non-profit entity, the Volunteer Board of Director’s ensures that all events hosted, and held at the Pavilion provide financial stability to ensure the viability and the future of the Kincardine Pavilion both as a historic, and cherished venue.
HISTORY OF BANDS & PERFORMERS
- Giles Merrymakers
- Guy Lombardo
- Don Messer
- Lionel Thornton
- Mart Kenny
- CKNX Barn Dance Gang
- Tiffin’s Orchestra
- Ozzie Williams and his Band