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By Wm. May
Published: 03/01/17 Topics: Comments: 0
Just West of the Green Lantern Tavern in Copalis Beach Washington State is a very strange looking building where Rock and Roll reigned supreme in the 1960's.
Hundreds of thousands of Quonset huts were produced by the U.S. Military in World War Two. These prefabricated structures of galvanized steel were semicircular cross-sections that looked like half of barrel sitting upside down on the ground.
After the war, Quonset huts were sold as surplus to the public and a very large version ended up along side the road by the Pacific Ocean where enterprising music lovers decided it would be a perfect venue for the hordes of teenagers who came to the beach each weekend.
Dubbed the Seaway Dance Hall, many young rock bands got their first serious gigs there and my group "The District Five" was one of them.
At the age of 15, we were made to feel like stars as the walls of the hut seemed to pulse and swell by guitar amps played far too loud and dancers who jumped and yelled and screamed. We played a little better, played a little longer and glowed with the acceptance the crowds gave us as we were starting our musical careers.
Bigger name bands from Washington State and the Northwest also appeared, including names that may be unfamiliar except by those who haunted the Seaway all summer long.
Bands like - The Beachcombers, Little Bill & The Bluenotes, The Candidos, The Chaotics (Sumner), The Chessmen, Dennis Wayne and the Cole Jets, The Epics, The Frantics, The Galaxies, The Intricates, Noblemen, Cymantha McGugin & The Cherry Frost , The Titans.
The Seaway also showed movies during the slow season, but the wise owner had put the chairs onto risers which could be rolled out of the building to clear the floor for dances which were only held in the months of June, July and August.
Today the building sits dark and quiet just waiting for a new generation of music lovers to rediscover what great music, salt air and a bunch of fun loving people can do to transform a humble Quonset hut into a musical mansion, at least for a while.
Author: Wm. May – Beach Lover, Plumbob Publishing
Blog #: 0517 – 03/01/17
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