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Honky tonking in Rupert

May 24th,2024 | Arts & Entertainment

Ryan McNally and his band will take over the Rupert Community Centre on May 31 for the Hills’ own honkey tonk party. Photo: Courtesy Ryan McNally

Recently, there have been plenty of good reasons to visit the Rupert Hall, not least the drive through the beautiful Gatienau Valley to get there. Square dances, life celebrations,  80th birthday parties. And now here comes the very first all-ages Rupert Hall Honky Tonk May 31. For the night, the Rupert Hall will resemble Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge, the oldest honky tonk bar in Nashville, with great country music, a dance floor full of some fine two-stepping, and a cash bar. 

The music-packed night is produced by the local Family Style Productions, Corey Pool and his partner Miranda Ceara. The couple, with the support of the fine La Pêche General Store, has been partly responsible for the upsurge in good times at the Hall. They’ve already got momentum, and more is promised in the coming months. 

For the honky tonk night, the doors swing open at 7 p.m., and half an hour later, when it will no doubt be full, there will be a two-step dance lesson. Don’t be nervous it’s the easiest of dances – slow, quick, quick, slow – and there’s a barn full of teaching videos online.

And then the music. Headlining the evening is Ryan McNally and his band.  A rural Quebec lad, McNally was ten when he picked up his first guitar, and he can play acoustic traditional blues, jazz, and old-time music on many instruments.  Pool himself will be playing with his brother Sonny Aiken as well as Stuart Rutherford, occasionally of the Dusty Drifters on dobro and fiddle, ragtime guitarist C.A. Jackson,  and local Folk Collusion host Kate Greenland. The Hall’s floor is going to get a good workout. 

Tickets for this honky tonk are $15, $20 at the door. Online they can be bought by typing in Rupert Hall honky tonk, and the FronTDoor+ site will come up. Or swing along to the La Pêche General Store, always worth a visit, and pick up a ticket or more there. And bring some cash, both for the bar and for the vintage clothing stalls that will line one side of the hall. Next up for Family Style Productions at the Rupert Hall, Petunia and the Vipers, June 27th. 

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