The Shirley Hill Boogies were (so I hear) wild, crazy and fun hoedowns at the Shirley Hall in the 70’s up to the early 80’s. Mostly it was local or at least semi-local bands – two bands Roxxlyde and Slingshot Victoria were both frequent acts. They were popular with both Shirleyites and many from Sooke and the rest of the south Island.
Unfortunately they were a bit too wild for their own good ,due to a combination of incidents, changing times and a decrease in tolerance of wild west mentality, they got shut down and then there wasn’t enough interest to restart them with less hard partying behaviours at the time.
Despite being too young to have caught the originals I’ve heard tales for many years about them and wished that they were still going on. Then this fall I decided why not organize a reboot myself. So I requested some feedback both specifically from some people and generically with a survey on the Internet. After that I did some investigating and looking at dates and figured out that February would work best.
The first of the rebooted Shirley Hill Boogies is now scheduled for Saturday Feb. 16 from 7-10 p.m. (doors open at 6:30), although the band and I expect it could go somewhat later if everyone is having fun.
Since this boogie is scheduled for two days after Valentine’s Day it is entitled Valentine’s Weekend Boogie so bringing a date/partner is suggested but certainly not required of course. Due to modern fire regulations the maximum occupancy of the Shirley Community Hall is 80 – a far cry from the old days when the boogies were often packed with up to 200 people – so there are only 70 tickets available. Desserts and coffee/tea are included in the ticket price. There are quite a few differences from the old boogies – such as no smoking inside, no drinking and driving, ending before the sun comes up.
Playing for our enjoyment will be STERLING, a local Sooke/South Island rock band, who play what they call “sterling rock” as in rock that is neither too soft nor too hard and is hence enjoyable by all. They play all their own original compositions and are heading to the semi-finals of Soprano’s and Absolute Underground’s second Annual Battle of the Bands. They are also bringing a few friends who will play some covers.
Tickets will be available from The Stick in the Mud in Sooke, by email/paypal to firstname.lastname@example.org. Updates are being posted at the Shirley Hill Boogies Facebook Page (www.facebook.com/shirleyhillboogies). If there are any tickets left, will be available at the hall from 5:30 or so until 6:29 sharp on Feb. 16. The Shirley Community Hall is located 20 km NW of Sooke on West Coast Rd.
Contributed by Nick Wilde