GREENFIELD – The Warren Cultural Center (WCC) in Greenfield will transform into a ballroom from 2 to 5 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 15, for an afternoon of big-band music and dancing. The Stardusters will play tunes from the 1920s through the 2000s, all with danceable bandstand styling.
The center will be set up club style, with table and chairs, and wine, beer, soft drinks and snacks available throughout the afternoon. Cost is $8 per person at the door.
The band started playing together in the 1950s under the name The Hi-Fis, according to current leader Dale Menning. He joined the group in 1985 and the name changed to The Stardusters. “The little band with the big band sound” includes trumpet, trombone, saxophone, keyboard, bass and drums, with players from the Des Moines area, Boone, and Harlan, said Menning, who is from Guthrie Center.
“We play a little bit of everything: foxtrot, polka, waltz, rock ‘n’ roll, country, fast swing, whatever you like to dance to,” Menning said.
The event represents a return of some past glory of Warren Opera House, which opened 120 years ago. Dances were popular events at the turn of the 20th century and into the 1920s and ‘30s.
WCC opened its doors in spring 2012 after a complete restoration of the 1896 Warren Building on the town square in Greenfield. The Opera House, with its landmark turret, has returned to life after decades of disuse, and now features a multi-purpose auditorium. The cultural center also includes Ed & Eva’s retail art store, selling the wide-ranging works of more than 100 Iowa artisans; lobby and gallery space, displaying rotating exhibits; historic residence meeting rooms and a balcony bedroom suite. Information about the center and events there is available at www.warrenculturalcenter.com and on Facebook.