SAVE THE DATE: SEPTEMBER 17, 2016
Put on your dancing shoes. Experience the ambiance, music, songs and dances performed during the dynamic era of the Rosedale Beach & Hotel. Rosedale was a resort on the north side of Indian River Inlet, where Gull Point now stands, and west of Oak Orchard. It featured “a hotel, boardwalk, dance hall, picnic and beach area, campground and amusement park,” according to an historical marker. For decades, the Rosedale was the only place in southern Delaware where African Americans could swim, picnic and be entertained by famous black musicians, gospel singers and artists of all genres and not have to worry about the Jim Crow laws.
Entertainers included Louis Armstrong, Count Basie, James Brown, Cab Calloway, Ray Charles, Sam Cooke, Fats Domino, Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, Aretha Franklin, Jackie Wilson and Stevie Wonder. The resort opened in the early 1900’s, but its boardwalk was destroyed in the storm of 1962.
According to Don Blakey, leader of the Don Del Enterprise’s theater wing, Rosedale “ . . . was a place of respite, enjoyment, activities. What drew people there, even busloads from Wilmington was camaraderie. It was the place to have rocking good time.” The group,with more than 40 years of entertainment experience, will perform at the event. The company comes from all walks of life and has performed extensively throughout the state.
Join us for cocktails, silent auction, social time, dinner, program, and music for dancing pleasure. This event will be held at the Milford Senior Center on Saturday, September 17. Watch for ticket sales announcement this summer. For more information, call our gallery at 430-7646.
Contributed by Sharon Walls Hall