Surf to be featured in history project


Musicologist, CL native Westover to spearhead task at hand

Jonas Westover says he’s up to the challenge.


The Minneapolis, Minn. historian and musicologist, with a personal history in Clear Lake, has begun creating a written history of the Surf since its inception in 1933.  The project aims to create the most complete history possible of the Surf through 

written materials like advertisements and scrapbooks, a visual history through photographs, posters, and memorabilia, and an oral history through the stories of people who attended events of all types at the historic venue. The result of the project will be a substantial book on the subject which will represent one of the only venue-centered music histories written about American popular music.

Westover hopes to include a wide range of stories from people of all ages who have enjoyed the Surf at some point in their lives. He is looking for stories of any kind from people who have been at the Surf from its creation in 1933 up to the present day. Tales of how the Surf has been a part of people’s lives will help to build a thorough story of a very influential musical venue.  Especially helpful will be accounts and information about local bands, all of whom appeared regularly on the Surf stage.  However, tales about well-known personalities are always welcome, as are stories of how families enjoyed the ballroom, from contests to dance classes.  

A free lecture entitled “Twilight of the 50s: Four Months at the Surf in 1958-9” will be presented at the Clear Lake Public Library on Feb. 1, 2013 as part of the events surrounding the Winter Dance Party.  Westover will be speaking about his findings thus far, but will also follow the lecture with a discussion of the Surf Ballroom History Project and its goals.

Dr. Westover received his Ph.D. at the Graduate Center of - Read More Via e-Edition

Comments are closed.