CHERRY CREEK - In conjunction with the Summer Gazebo Concert Series, "Our Musical Heritage Across America," the Cherry Creek Town Museum is hosting a special exhibition of items that showcase the town's musical history.
The museum is located in the Cherry Creek town hall, in front of the Memorial Park, and will be open during the Thursday evening concerts from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., with Sharon Howe Sweeting, town historian, available to help visitors.
The display spans more than 100 years of musical events and begins in the late 1800s, when the Stillman Opera House hosted operetta and minstrel shows. The opera house, located on the western side of Main Street, behind what is now Crossroads Grocery, burned late in December 1909. Old photographs of a minstrel show and an opera are featured items in the exhibit. Operettas were also performed in 1925 or 1926, but the location is unknown. One photograph identifies Betty Bolles, a former Cherry Creek resident, as the "fifth from the left" in the front row. Mrs. Bolles also donated several early photographs related to the Opera House to the museum. Another photograph features the Brass Band of Cherry Creek, date unknown, but pictures citizens Clint Mount, Ulrich, Will Becker, Henry Butler, Lem Wood, George Kent, Arden Bullock. Ole Becher and Cy Bentley.
The 1950s are represented by a photograph of the Methodist church's 60-member choir wearing their new robes for the very first time. The choir director at the time was Gerald Hall, accompanied by Linda Hall. Also from the 1950s is a photograph of the Pine Valley Central School Cornerstone Program Band and Glee Club Chorus, with The Post-Journal reporting in an article of April 3, 1964 with the headline, "They're going to miss (Lyman) Cook at Pine Valley."
The 1970s are featured with an old 78rpm phonograph record of the second annual Pops Concert performed by the Pine Valley Central School band, under the direction of Larry Waite, who also loaned a CD of the same concert to the museum, which provides background music for the exhibit.
Also on display are newspaper reports of the current Summer Gazebo Concert Series.
The current exhibit was researched and mounted by Sharon Howe Sweeting, town historian, with assistance from Gloria Smith.
Mrs. Howe Sweeting is searching for information and photographs of concerts that took place on the balcony of Bentham's Hardware Store between 1950 and 1970.
The Cherry Creek Town Museum is open regularly from noon to 2 p.m. Saturdays and by appointment by calling 296-5105.