Juneteenth Celebration on 9th Street this Saturday, June 20

dreamlandballroom.jpgLittle Rock, Ark., – On Saturday, June 20, 2015 Arkansas’ FlagandBanner.com will join forces with the Mosiac Templars Cultural Center for their celebration  of Juneteenth ,  a holiday that commemorates the announcement of the abolition of slavery in the U.S. state of Texas in June 1865, and more generally the emancipation of African-American slaves throughout the Confederate South. Celebrated on June 19, the term is a portmanteau of June and nineteenth, and is recognized as a state holiday or special day of observance in most states.

Juneteenth is a time for reflection and forward thinking for people all across America. A variety of entertainment is planned for this block party style celebration that has something for everyone. Attendees will find live music, children’s activities, food trucks, non-profits, and vendor booths ranging from clothing to food. More than 1,200 people were in attendance last year with more than 50 participating vendors, performers and sponsors.

Arkansas’ FlagandBanner.com will host two exhibits: The History of the Taborian Hall and the Dreamland Ballroom with the opportunity to enjoy tours of the ballroom. Construction began in 1916 and since then Taborian Hall has been an integral part of the Little Rock African American Culture ever since. The Dreamland Ballroom on the third floor became a popular stop on the famous Chitlin’ Circuit where musical greats such as Ray Charles, B.B. King, Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington performed among others. It also has a strong military history as the building served as the USO for African American soldiers during World War II. Currently the Dreamland Ballroom is undergoing further restoration efforts. It is one of the last remaining original ballrooms in America.

The second exhibit is “Old School: Remembering the Brinkley Academy”  visitors will see how a school in rural eastern Arkansas served the needs of African American students who received direction and inspiration for nearly six decades through an exhibit of photographs.

Exhibits open at 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. Dreamland Ballroom tours are at 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. and are free to the public. Please note that the ballroom is on the third floor.  Those wishing to tour it should be aware that there is no elevator. Currently the Friends of Dreamland Ballroom are raising funds to have an elevator installed for the disabled. If you would like to make a tax deductible contribution to the Friends of Dreamland Elevator Fund call 501.255.5700 or visit them online at www.dreamlandballroom.org. For more information on the Taborian Hall exhibits for the Juneteenth celebration contact Madison@flagandbanner.com .

Timeline of Taborian Hall

Timeline of Taborian Hall

♦ Originally named Taborian Temple,  construction began in 1916 and was  completed in 1918.uso

♦ First tenant was African American fraternal insurance organization, the  Knights and Daughters of the Tabor.

♦ Also in 1918, a Negro Soldiers Club opened on the ground floor, providing a recreational center for African American soldiers stationed at Camp Pike.

♦ Taborian Temple housed many  commercial endeavors including professional offices for Dr. J. V. Jordan, dentist,  and Dr. W. B. Black, physician, Gem Pharmacy, Ritz Beer Garden, and Dreamland Grill.

♦ By 1937, the Dreamland Ballroom was firmly established on Taborian’s third floor and was host to the musical greats Ray Charles, B.B. King, Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington among others.

♦ During World War II, the United Service Club, USO, bought the building and turned the first to the third floors into a club that served thousands of Black soldiers from Camp Robinson (formerly Camp Pike) and the Stuttgart Air Base.

♦ In 1954, the Temple became known as Taborian Hall, and housed three nightclubs: Twin City Club was in the basement; the Waiters Club was located on the second floor; and the Dreamland Ballroom had morphed into Club Morocco.

♦ By 1970 all of the clubs had closed and the building was abandoned.

♦ In 1991, Kerry McCoy purchased the building to house her business FlagandBanner.com.

♦  In 2009,Friends of Dreamland, a non-profit group, was established to protect and restore the Ballroom.

♦ Today, restoration continues with your generous tax-deductable support!

 

Archive of Dreamland Ballroom Stories, Photos or Videos on the web

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Archives on the web of Dreamland Ballroom: 

Here you will find links to stories, editorials, photos, photographers who have worked in the ballroom, videos taken in Dreamland along with news footage and every link we can find that discusses Dreamland Ballroom. Every one, individual, group, school, organization, business, photographer, bride…whomever you have our deepest gratitude for posting such wonderful things on the internet to show the world about Taborian Hall and her Dreamland Ballroom.

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Busy Days, Dreamy Nights: The Taborian Hall

The Taborian Hall and her history

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Few people can remember The Line as it once was. During segregation, the part of Ninth Street west of Broadway was the cultural and economic hub of the African American community in downtown Little Rock, Arkansas. Now, the street is populated by vacant lots and relatively new businesses. None of the original buildings remain except for one.

The Line – also known as 9th Street “The Line” also known as West 9th Street

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Restoring the Forgotten Dreams of the Taborian Hall

Historically significant building, Taborian Hall saved from destruction

The Taborian Hall is more than monumental; it is a living monument. The grandiose, Classical-style structure was built in 1916. It was part of the African American business district on West Ninth Street in downtown Little Rock, Arkansas, and hosted legendary performers like B.B. King, Ella Fitzgerald, and Louis Armstrong.

The area declined in the 1970s, and most original buildings were torn down. The Taborian Hall was empty and neglected until a local woman resurrected it as headquarters for her business. By doing so, she saved both the building and a part of Little Rock’s history.

Saved by a Woman’s Love

Kerry McCoy in Taborian Hall

Kerry McCoy often passed the ruin and dreamed of running her business, Arkansas Flag and Banner, from such a grand building. Eventually,

she worked up the courage to go inside and made her way to the third floor Dreamland Ballroom. Birds chirped and sun streamed in through a hole in the roof, and, in a moment of euphoria, McCoy saw past the wreckage to the majesty that could resurface.

In 1991, she bought the building and began repairing the roof. After the September 11, 2001 attacks, McCoy opened the first floor to the public and expanded her business to sell patriotic gifts and decorations at Taborian Hall. Although the first two floors were functional, the third floor remained in shambles for a decade after Flag and Banner moved in. Although the Dreamland Ballroom was perhaps the most interesting and historically significant part of the building, the cost of its renovation was prohibitive.

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Mosaic Templars MLK Day Challenge at Dreamland Ballroom a Huge Success

Students impress with MLK Day Challenge at Dreamland Ballroom

1530365_10152614458398782_784575582_nLittle Rock, Ark., – Yesterday as part of Martin Luther King Jr. National Day of Service, the Mosaic Templars brought a group of student volunteers to the Dreamland Ballroom (MLK Day Challenge at Dreamland Ballroom), located at 800 West 9th Street on the third floor of the Arkansas’ FlagandBanner.com building.

The group of students brought great attitudes and terrific work ethic along with them, they not only painted the ballroom floor they also cleaned inside and around the outdoor area of the 800 block of 9th Street. Everyone employed at Arkansas’ FlagandBanner.com was greatly impressed by the young people who turned out. These students gave up a day out of school to be a part of the Mosaic Templars MLK Day Challenge at Dreamland Ballroom, though none of them seemed to feel that they were giving up anything. (more…)

Mosaic Templars Challenge Students on MLK Day: Volunteers to paint Dreamland Ballroom

Little Rock, Ark., – Arkansas’ FlagandBanner.com and the Dreamland Ballroom will be hosting students on Martin Luther King Junior National Day of Service Monday, January 20, 2014 between the hours of 10 am – 12 pm. The group of students were organized by the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center (just down the street from Taborian Hall). The students will be repainting the floor of the historic Taborian Hall’s Dreamland Ballroom as part of the MLK Challenge, a program designed by the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center to engage youth in the role of servant leadership with a full day of service projects that challenge them mentally and socially. Participants will work at sites across the city.

“We are very glad to be a part of this great youth educational and service opportunity,” said Kerry McCoy, owner of Taborian Hall and president of Arkansas’ FlagandBanner.com. “We are very proud that our Taborian Hall is the “sister” building to the Mosaic Templars and thrilled to be a part of the MLK Challenge,” McCoy continued. Press and photographers are welcome to commemorate this community service event. (more…)

Arkansas Life publishes beautiful Dreamland photos

Dreamland Ballroom was the site of an Arkansas Life photo shoot several weeks ago for an article featuring Arkansas’ top “Creatives.” The resulting photos are a sight to behold!

Editor Katie Bridges wrote:

I’ve said “I can’t believe I never knew that place existed!” countless times this month.  Innumerous.  In fact, I’m fairly certain my colleagues’ eyes must be rolling as they read this.”That place” I’ve been referring to is the storied Dreamland Ballroom, tucked away (and currently undergoing renovation) on the third floor of Arkansas Flag and Banner’s storefront on Ninth street in downtown Little Rock.  Built in 1918, it once played host to such soul-stirring greats as Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong (!) and Etta James.  I could wax poetic about its peeling paint and plaster- clad in corals, cobalts, goldenrods– its graceful, sloping ceiling.  It’s diamond-patterned reliefs.  Its ability to transport you back in time, imagining yourself lost in Satchmo’s trumpet, Ray Charles’ piano. (more…)