On May 15, 1935, Eli Rice and his New 11-Piece Band gave their Farewell Appearance at the Deutsch Haus in St. Paul, a show sponsored by the Minnesota Colored Gophers Baseball Club. The Mammoth Floor Show included Bennie & Rogers, Cecelia Williams, Kelly Stone, Marion Abernathy, Oliver Harris, Richard Rice, William Davenport, and Robert Freeman.
AKA (presumably a black fraternity or sorority) advertised an “Apache Dance” to be held at Stepka’s Como Gardens at Western and Como Avenues.
A dance on June 17, 1935 at the Aragon featured the Harlem Play Girls, “the first big time girls’ band to appear in Minneapolis. Their only and last appearance before leaving for tour of the West Coast.”
A matinee dance at the Apex in June featured Popo Warfield and his Brownskin Steppers, accompanied by Johnny Wheeler and his 6-Piece Orchestra.
On July 15 Carroll Dickerson and his Orchestra appeared at the Aragon Ballroom, direct from the Grand Terrace Cafe, Chicago. Not sure what this means: “Also Recently Featured 14 – CBS Radio Artist – 14.” After the show, attend the Breakfast Ball at the Apex, starting at 1:30 am and featuring Rook Ganz and his Cotton Club Orchestra.
The Niceroma Club, Inc., sponsored a Moonlight Excursion Down the Old Mississippi on July 29, with music by Babe Salters and His Creolians.
Another excursion was sponsored by the Gloom Chasers Club on August 5 on the Donna Mae, with the Donna Mae Boat Orchestra.
A “Battle of Music and Breakfast Ball” was held on August 15 at midnight in benefit of Citizens Community Union Picket Lines. Four bands would play at Apex Hall: Rook Ganz, Scottie Williams and His Black Cat Orchestra, C. Sharp and his Seven Flats, and the Apex Night Club Band. “Help Us Help Our People” The ad was donated by C.E. Newman, publisher of the Minneapolis Spokesman.
The Triangle Clubs of the Twin Cities sponsored a Gigantic Picnic and Dance at Harriet Island in St. Paul on August 26. No band was mentioned, but there would be popularity and bathing beauty contests.
On August 19 we are exhorted to “Come out and hear a real band,” namely Grant Moore and his Orchestra at a Breakfast Ball at Apex Hall.
Earl Fraser and his band apparently made their debut at the Aragon Ballroom on September 16. “Everybody Attends Dances at the Aragon” “Come out, hear the newest and most sensational band in the Northwest.”
The Dance Masters hosted a Joe Louis Victory Ball at the Coliseum Ballroom in St. Paul on September 30. On October 14 they hosted the Southerners band at the same venue.
The Biggest Dance of the Season featured Walter Barnes and his Famous Royal Creolians (Chicago’s Favorite Band) at the Aragon Ballroom on October 7, 1935.
On October 28 the Fite-Baker Harlem Hi Hatters, an “out-of-town orchestra with a group of big-time entertainers,” played for a dance at the Aragon Ballroom. The floor show featured Buddy Short, Velda Shannon, and Carroll Watkins.
The Apex’s Hallowe’en Breakfast Dance featured Rook Ganz and His Cotton Club Orchestra with Bill Pugh, Magic Voiced Singer. The Apex Band would also play, and there were two floor shows featuring Van Epps & Clifton Phillips’ Revue with the Brown Sisters.
A Cabaret Ball featuring Walter Barnes and His Creolians appeared on November 13 at Apex Hall.
The Annual Pre-Thanksgiving Dance at the Veterans’ Hall, St. Paul Auditorium, took place on November 23, 1935, under the Auspices of Leslie Lawrence Post No. 497, American Legion. “Hot, Tantalizing Music by Crooning Little Joe and His Rug Cutters, Featuring Rose Grant, ‘The Personality Directress.'”
The Social Twelve were back with a Fall Cabaret Dance on November 18 at the Flying Dutchman.
The Keystone Bar featured 6 per cent beer, Ed Pursell at the piano, and the Silver-Voiced Baritone of Jack Meredith in the Mystic Cavern.
A dance was held at the Apex Club on November 20 “in Honor of” Noble Sissle, which probably meant that Sissle and his band would be appearing elsewhere in the city and coming to the Apex afterwards. Music would be by the Apex Band and the floor show featured McDonald, Clifton Phelps, Van Epps and Apex Chorus. “Twin City Musicians and Entertainers Will be out in full force to welcome Sissle Company.
On November 25 Reese Martin presented “The Event of the Season,” a dance at the Aragon Ballroom featuring Red Perkins and his Dixie Ramblers. Four Thanksgiving turkeys were given away.
The Jolly Sixteen Club gave a dance at the Pearl Inn on November 25.
A Thanksgiving Cabaret Ball at the Apex started on November 27 and ended at breakfast on the 28th. A Battle of Music pitted the Apex Nite Club Band against Clarence Johnson’s Stumble Inn Orchestra.
Billed as the first matinee dance of the season was a Battle of Music at the Apex featuring the Apex Orchestra and Clarence Johnson’s Stumble Inn Aces. A Floor Show featured “Ethel Cross, Torch Singing M.C.; Sonny Nichols, RKO Favorite; and Epps and Phillips, Dancers Excellent.” Prizes were a box of cigars for Gentlemen and Combination Cigarette Lighter for Ladies.
Christmas Night festivities at the Apex included Rook Ganz and his Cotton Club Orchestra; Ethel Cross, emcee; and petite dancer Pearl Harvey. “Put your presents on the Apex Christmas Tree – You and your friends will enjoy this unique way of receiving gifts.”
Big New Year’s Eve Dance at the Aragon Ballroom featured Walter Erickson’s Red Hot Band. “The first time in the Twin Cities that the colored people have been able to secure such a lovely ballroom on a holiday.” Dancing from 9:30 to 4:30.