“The Guy Dance Committee”

Other main characters are local citizens from Southampton who are portrayed by their bloodline Descendants of today. They are non-actors who will be standing tall to represent their actual Ancestors who would have attended Guy’s dance at the Dance Pavilion.

Almeda Greathead (41 years old in 1935)

Played by Elizabeth Campbell – Great Granddaughter
Almeda was born in 1894 in Hanover and was 41 years of age in 1935. She would have been at the Breakers for the dance with her husband Joe. At home there were their 3 sons, Barry, John and Peter. Barry was the oldest and he was 15 then.
Joseph owned a grocery store on High Street, halfway up from Grosvenor on the south side. Almeda was kept busy at home where she raised her 3 sons and made what had already become Southampton’s most famous treat — Mrs. Greathead’s Suckers! She’d created them first in 1919 for Halloween and they rapidly became the favourite treat not just for the kids but for all the residents of Southampton — AND for all of the tourists during the summers!
The suckers were made from brown sugar, corn syrup, water, butter and vanilla. She made them on Saturday mornings and had developed a recipe that could produce up to about 1,000 each time. Local young boys delivered them to all the merchants in town who kept them for sale at their cash register check outs.
The original price was 4 for a penny. Probably close to a penny each by 1935. Also of special note is that her brother “Jockey” Grasser became the local movie theatre projectionist at the Esquire Theatre in 1940.
On August 1, 1935, Almeda would have been at Guy’s Dance, probably handing out her suckers with the hope they might become popular with the out of town crowd.

Donald “Brock” MacAulay (64 years old in 1935)

Played by Brock MacAulay’s nephew’s granddaughter Michelle MacAulay
Turcotte’s husband, Brock Turcotte
The great curling phenom, Brock MacAulay, was born in Southampton in 1871. He took to the “Roarin’ Game” early in life and competed in the late 1800s / early 1900s. He travelled to and won at major events all over Canada at a time when travel was limited to the train. Memorabilia, pictures and stories of his many accomplishments are aplenty at the Bruce County Museum.
But the best part is that the history of the first 100 years of Curling in Ontario, written in 1946, heralds Brock MacAulay and his team from Southampton as one the centuries best ever in the province. There was no such thing as a National Championship at that time but there were Major Events and the boys from Southampton won more than their share.
One event in St. Thomas pitted 72 of the best teams in the country in a major competition and when it ended, the Brock MacAulay team was the victor as they hadn’t lost a single game. They took the large majestic trophy home and the following year when the competition was held in Southampton, they won it again!
In 1912, upon their return home to Southampton, via train, the headline story in the Southampton Beacon read, “When the famous Brock MacAulay Curling Team returned victorious from the International Bonspiel in Winnipeg, on the late train, they were met by a candlelight procession.”
In 1930, Brock MacAulay was inducted as an honorary Life Member of the Ontario Curling Association.
Brock was a very successful dry goods merchant in our town and in 1935, he and his wife Jane would have been part of the crowd at the Pavilion.

Eleanore Margaret (Robinson) Winchester (32 years old in 1935)

Played by granddaughter Kathryn Forsyth.
Born in London, Ontario in 1903, Eleanore was a woman ahead of her time. Her father was William Robinson and her mother was Hectorene (nee Thompson). Eleanore was driving by age 14, and she graduated from the MacDonald Institute (now known as the University of Guelph) as a Dietitian in 1923. She was engaged to Basil Bowman but called that off after meeting Paul Martyn Winchester on a blind date during a Montreal ski weekend. Eleanore married Paul in 1928, in London.
Vacationing and visiting Southampton was a big part of their life and every summer they would visit the Robinson family cottage, named Windermere Cottage.
In 1932 a baby daughter Jane arrived, their only child.
The Dance Pavilion on Southampton beach was big a part of the summer for Eleanore and Paul who looked forward to the big bands that played there.
Eleanore and Paul would have been at the Pavilion on August 1st Guy’s dance and her parents would have been enjoying the music while sitting on the beach looking after Baby Jane.
Eleanore’s mother Hectorene “Lala” Robinson, is at the dance tonight.

Hectorene Willa (Thompson) Robinson aka “Lala” (born in 1882, she is 53 years old in 1935)

Played by granddaughter Jane Kramer
Hectorene Thompson was a diamond-studded socialite. Born in Ontario in 1882, she married William Elliot Robinson, heir to the Robinson’s Little Wholesale Dry
Goods Company in 1902, in London Ontario. Their daughter, Eleanore Margaret, was born in London in 1903.
Eleanore married Paul Martyn Winchester in 1928, and their daughter Jane (Kramer) was born in 1932.
Hectorene referred to herself as Rene and in 1935, to her baby granddaughter Jane, she was known as “Lala”. Rene aka Lala was a professional singer at the time and would often sing to her granddaughter Jane. She would always start with “LA-LA-LA” so as a baby, Jane would only need to say “Lala” to get her to grandmother to sing to her.
Family friends remember her white hair (that turned white at age nineteen) and her fingers that sparkled from all the diamonds when she played Mahjong and Bridge.
While Paul and Eleanore were dancing in the Pavilion, their baby daughter Jane would have been listening to the music outside on the beach while her Grandmother “Lala” was watching over her — probably singing to her.
Hectorene’s daughter Eleanore Robinson Winchester is at the dance tonight.

Norma Calder (21 years in 1935)

Played by grand niece Michelle Turcotte
Norma Calder was born in Southampton in 1914. She had two sisters, Wilma and Doris. All three were tall attractive young ladies. Norma was an excellent athlete and was the pitcher on the Southampton lady’s baseball team, in the 1930’s when ladies baseball teams enjoyed considerable notoriety. Her sister Doris was also on the team.
Her life away from Southampton took her to many parts of Canada when she married a Banker and they lived most of their lives in Saskatchewan where she became a very accomplished golfer and competed at the highest levels of Amateur golf at the Provincial level.
In the 1980s when she was widowed, she returned to Southampton and lived with her sister Doris on the street adjoining Chippewa Golf and Country Club.
In 1935 she would have been at the Pavilion with her baseball teammates (also known as the “Ladies Fisherman”) and probably some of the boys from the Provincial Champion Southampton Fishermen ball team.

Orin Delong (65 years old in 1935)

Played by grandson Art Knechtel
Orin was born in Tillsonburg in 1870. He married Ada Henry in Woodstock on February 7, 1900. Orin had graduated as a pharmacist and he and Ada moved to Teeswater shortly after their marriage and stayed there until 1910 when they arrived in Southampton with a young family.
They were members of the Baptist Church and the family grew to include 10 children named Arthur, Bernice, Stephen, Henry. Wilford, Elouise, Ross, Wenonah, Dorothy, and Lorne.
Four of Orin and Ada’s sons served in the Canadian military in WWII and they all returned.
For more than 65 years Delongs Pharmacy and Drug Store was the go-to place in Southampton. It was located in the middle of the shopping area on High Street and everyone would come in for the soda fountain and ice-cream. From 1914 it was Orin behind the counter and then his son Ross took over in the late 1930s.
Orin and Ada and who knows how many of their children and their spouses or dates would have been at Guy’s big show on August 1st, 1935!


Alice McLeod is played by Ellie (22 years old in 1935)

Played by Ellie Lehman
Alice was born in 1913 and had been working from the age of 10 as a Milkmaid, milking cows on her parent’s farm in Tara, Ontario. As a child Alice remembers traveling by horse and buggy with her parents when they would “follow the sunset” all the way to Southampton where she and her brothers would spend the day jumping off the bridge into the Saugeen River even though it wasn’t allowed. They would end the day on the beach with a picnic lunch box filled with her mother’s homemade cheese sandwiches and baked water pie. “We would watch the beautiful orange and mauve sky change shape behind Chantry Island and the balmy breeze blew across the lake and it all mixed together with the music that came from the Dance Pavilion.” Alice loved to dance the tango with her sister but mostly, she wanted to be a Singer so she would sing along to radio whenever they would play Benny Goodman or Louis Armstrong but her favorite was always Guy Lombardo. The Great Depression had hit her family hard and Alice was determined to sing for Mr. Lombardo when she heard he was coming to town! So Alice saved up 5 cents and borrowed
clothes to wear to the dance on August 1, 1935. She wouldn’t have missed the chance to sing “It Had To Be You” for Guy, for anything!

Rosie and Brent, Dance Instructors from Guelph

Played by Rosemary and Brent Rogers
Rosie and Brent are in their early 30s and they have been dancing their whole lives. They take the train from Guelph every weekend to go dancing at the Dance Halls on the Bruce coast. Southampton is their favorite. The station is just up the road and so they just get off the train and walk down Morpeth Street and rent a room at the Lakeside Park Hotel for the week and
try to go to all the dances in the area while they’re here.
They’ve been coming to the Southampton Pavilion since it opened in 1922 to the Southampton Rayner Dance Band. That’s when the dances were five cents a dance and the
Rayners played ‘Valencia’ at least five times every night.
Everyone feels in a happy dancing mood since the Great War ended. With all the Big Bands, the live music, the dancing, and the warm summer nights, the dance halls are packed most
Rosie and Brent instruct the latest steps they’ve learn from the Americans so they can help everyone to dance. “Meet me at the Pav!” is what everyone says to each other during the day and youngsters flock to the Pavilions all over, eager to learn the latest dance crazes like the Charleston, the Jitter Bug and the scandalous Black Bottom. Sometimes it can get quite exciting when the authorities have to keep the peace between the local lads and airmen who scrap over girlfriends on and off the dance floor!
They’ve been to most of the dance halls on the Bruce coast. When there aren’t dances at the Southampton Pavilion they go to The Cedar Crescent Casino in Port Elgin that runs six nights a
week through to Thanksgiving weekend!
Or sometimes they go to the McKenzie’s Pavilion in Oliphant built by William McKenzie in 1921. It’s the oldest of the Bruce coast Pavilions and the dance hall is on the second floor.
There’s a new pavilion at Sauble Beach called the Octagon, because it has eight walls! It was built a couple of years ago in 1933 by Wally Scott who has his own band too! The best dance
floor is at the Kincardine Pavilion, that was built in 1923. Inside the hall is a large circular light that looks like a moon when it’s illuminated. They always turn it on for the last dance or when
they sing songs that have the word “moon” in it.
They have a couple of easy dance steps ready to teach everyone at the Dance with Guy Lombardo and they are delighted that Carmen will be singing too. “Charmaine” is their absolute favorite!