The Loft at Dreamland, one of Oak Bluffs’ newly renovated treasures, has had a long history of entertainment. Today it’s an adult lounge/game room following a time as an event/concert hall. It had lain fallow after the old Game Room was resurrected on Circuit avenue as Ryan’s Amusements.

Built soon after the Tivoli Ballroom in the early 1900s, Dreamland opened with dancing upstairs and nickelodeon movies downstairs. In subsequent years the building was used for automobiles — once Ben David’s Garage — and other automotive repairs and painting. In the 1970s, Dreamland’s upstairs was called Second Story Cinema and featured movies with W.C. Fields, the Marx Brothers and similar offerings from an older age that didn’t last that long.

An article from the July 9, 1985 Vineyard Gazette announced Night Lights, a club for the 14- to 20-year-old set who, unlike kids in America, didn’t have malls and McDonalds to hang out at. The multipurpose place had video games, kitchen equipment, sitting areas with strobe and other flashing colorful lights, a dance floor for disco dancing and a $3.50 cover charge. Ostensibly a good idea, the well-meaning effort didn’t last.

During World War II, Dreamland was used as a recreation center for the Navy with pool tables and slot machines. This was probably when it adopted the Dreamland Casino name seen in historic photographs. I recall an adventure in the late 1950s when Ritchie Steele and I located, and almost made it home, with an appropriated device we ”thought” was a pinball machine. However, while we were lugging it up the boardwalk in a little red wagon, an alert Oak Bluffs police officer was kind enough to provide us with a ride home, placing what turned out to be an old slot machine in his trunk for its return to Dreamland. So, similar to Prohibition in America from 1919 to 1933 that Oak Bluffs widely ignored, we once had gambling in Cottage City. Who expected that gambling might wind up in Aquinnah?

The Lagoon Pond Association hosts its annual meeting at 9 a.m. on Saturday, July 11, at Featherstone Center for the Arts. Speakers from Oak Bluffs include Todd Alexander, Gail Barmakian, Kathy Burton and Dave Grunden. Vineyard Haven will be represented by Danielle Ewart, Melinda and Michael Loberg and Jay Wilbur.

At 8 p.m. Saturday evening, the Tabernacle features Susan Klein and Alan Brigish’s production Story For A Starry Night with music by Gary Girouard. Tickets are $25 at the door, the museum shop and

The Martha’s Vineyard Chamber Music Society presents the Harlem Quartet on Monday July 13 and Tuesday July 14. Check for details on this and other Island events.

On Thursday, July 16, author Emily Claman presents Helene Johnson — Island’s Lost Gem of the Harlem Renaissance at 5:30 p.m. at the Martha’s Vineyard Museum. Her poetry was published regularly, and she was considered the female Langston Hughes. While at the museum be sure to see the fabulous Lois Mailou Jones exhibit of art from private collectors.

On Friday, July 17, Tom Dresser introduces his new book, Martha’s Vineyard: A History at the Oak Bluffs Council on Aging from 10 ti 11:30 a.m.

Thanks Island kid and star athlete Randall Jette and friends who spent time cleaning up Town Beach last weekend after barbarians unaware of how to carry in/carry out had descended.

Money is always an object of desire especially during the summer. The Martha’s Vineyard Theater Foundation that reopened the Strand needs another $100,000 ( Niantic park needs funds to complete its playground and basketball courts, and by next summer we will need a plan to help make the Oak Bluffs fireworks self-sustaining.

Look at all the mopeds parked in those ‘unauthorized’ parking spots next to the Strand. Ever wonder why they don’t get parking tickets? It’s so special that the always dangerous vehicles leading us slowly around the Island get such preferential treatment.

Keep your foot on a rock.

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