Rondeau Pavilion 1964November 11, 2009
Club: Rondeau Pavilion
Built in 1952 by Maurice Smyth
Location: Rondeau Park Ontario
What: Hottest dance club around for decades.
Note: People would drive from a hundred mile radius to party at the Pavilion, and there is no way I could do the Chatham Music Archive without mentioning this place and what I have been told about it. Nothing was like it for miles and miles and the kids would do anything to make it every night.
- The club drew 1,500 on average every Saturday night
- People came from Sarnia, Windsor, Detroit, London and everywhere in between
- Ages 12 – 20 were the scene for the infamous dances held
- The rules were strict but were respected and followed by patrons
- Bands included The pharaohs, The Fiends, Sally and the Bluesman, The American Breed, MC5(in 1969)
- Bob Seger and Alice Cooper played there regularly as struggling musicians before becoming famous
- The Hops (DJ’s spinning what the kids wanted to hear) were the high lights for the kids
- Popular Dj’s for the years the Pavilion were most packed were Bill Saunders and Paul Dusten
- Bill Saunders became the DJ in 1964
- The place is also memorable for its closing song “The Sand and the Sea”
- Girls waited against the wall for a guy to ask them to dance, that was the era
- The guys constantly walked clock wise around the hall
- Mr. Smyth sold Rondeau Pavilion in 1975, attendance was dropping as policies changed to the park
- The pavilion was the third and last dance hall at Rondeau
- Rondeau is Ontario’s second oldest provincial park, which was established in 1894, a year after Algonquin Provincial Park.
Main Source: The Weekender, May 10th 1980 By S. DudleyEmail your info & pictures to: