Central Saanich councillor Susan Mason and mayor Jack Mar practise for the upcoming family Strawberry Dance.

Central Saanich councillor Susan Mason and mayor Jack Mar practise for the upcoming family Strawberry Dance.

Strawberry swing this weekend in the bay

Dancers will be on Shaky Ground for the annual Strawberry Dance in Brentwood Bay this weekend.

Live band, Shaky Ground will play music from the Beatles to Barenaked Ladies and Roy Orbison to Van Morrison at the annual Strawberry Dance that dates back to the Depression.

The Brentwood Bay Community Hall was completed in June of 1934 and the community organized a dance to celebrate the opening. With the first local strawberries of the season were just being picked, it was a fitting theme.

That first Strawberry Dance proved so popular that it quickly became an annual event, usually held the last weekend of June.  Although it was temporarily discontinued during the Second World War years, the annual Strawberry Dance ran continuously until the early 1980s. At that point, it was too expensive to book the big bands, and “canned music” was tried.  Response was not good, and within two years the dance disappeared.

In 2000, the Brentwood Bay Revitalization Committee brought it back with live music. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for children and $25 for a family and are available in advance only. They can be purchased at Breadstuffs Bakery, Dollar Den and Fresh Cup Roastery.

All net proceeds are donated to support the Music In The Park concert series which runs Wednesday evenings in July and August in Pioneer Park, Brentwood Bay. Doors open at 7 p.m. on June 11.