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Where Shall We Go Dancing?

Montmagny was home to several venues where amateur accordionists could play for eager audiences. Here are just a few of the locations where local people met to spend pleasant evenings amid the sounds of their favourite instrument.

The Centre sportif Le Bûcheron

The Centre sportif Le Bûcheron

Established in 1944, the Centre sportif Le Bûcheron began its life as a meeting place for the local snowshoe club. In the 1960s and 1970s, it became more of a general-purpose leisure and cultural centre for the residents of Montmagny. In addition to organizing events, the centre also rented out its facilities. In fact, it was by far the town’s most popular venue for wedding receptions. Couples had to book at least a year and a half in advance! In those days, the band hired to play for a pair of newlyweds almost always featured an accordionist.

Montmagny Inn

Photograph of a black and white postcard showing the Montmagny Inn at the intersection of two streets. The one-and-a-half storey building has a curved roof featuring three dormer windows. It is surrounded by a covered veranda. A two-storey addition with a gable roof can be seen on the right.

The Montmagny Inn, later replaced by the À la Rive restaurant, first half of the 20th century

Albert J. B. Normand opened the Montmagny Inn on June 8, 1930. Until the venue was demolished in 1980, he and subsequent owners hosted hundreds of dances and shows featuring local accordionists.

Our Place or Yours?

In addition to reception halls and public venues, family homes were another popular gathering place for lovers of traditional music. Often, one house party spawned another, as guests at one event offered to host the next one, and so on.

Black and white photograph showing a group of musicians wearing costumes for Laetare Sunday..

Laetare Sunday in Montmagny, final quarter of the 20th century

Listen as Gérard Vézina describes the process:

Listen to the interview (FR) with transcript (EN).