Local History Advent Calendar 2022 – Day 4 – Cinderella Ballroom

It’s back! I has been 3 years since I published my last Local History Advent Calendar! So much has happened since that last time—including the publication of my first book, Mount Pleasant Stories—that I figured it was about time to dust off the Local History Advent Calendar once again. Similar to a regular advent calendar but instead of chocolate treats, each day you “open” a new historical treat. Think of them as holiday cocktail party fodder– 24 facts or stories about local history that can be used as conversation starters at your next social event.

185 East 11th after RollerGirl Rollerskates Inc painted the facade in 2013 in order to attract walk-by traffic on Main Street. Image: Google Street View.

This ca. 1927 building, at 185 E 11th, was designed by Bowman & Cullerne and built by A. P. Anderson for Fairmont Athletics Ltd., an early Mount Pleasant organization. It was constructed with a dance hall and store on the main floor, and a smaller hall or gymnasium in the concrete basement. By the late 1920s, the dance hall was known as the Cinderella Ballroom.

Vancouver Sun, December 10, 1931

Curiously, in the 1940s and 1950s the building served an “evangelical” purpose and was once home for Evangelistic Tabernacle and the cult, Canadian Temple of More Abundant Life. From the 1950s through the 1960’s the hall was known as the Pagoda Room, hosting groups like the Happier Old Age club, The Sweet Adelines (a female barbershop quartet group), and the annual “Miss Mount Pleasant” contest.

In the late 1980s and early 1990s, known once again as the Cinderella Ballroom, the Fringe Festival operated their main hangout and pub, the Fringe Club, from this space. It was also the first Mount Pleasant home for the jazz club, The Glass Slipper and a local performance and music venue for artists like Video Barbeque, Hard Rock Miners, The Evaporators, and Bob’s Your Uncle.

The building is currently owned by the Mount Pleasant War Memorial Community Cooperative Association and has been leased to independent tenants such as the current tenant, RollerGirl roller skate shop since 2003.

You can find more Mount Pleasant history in my walking tour book, Mount Pleasant Stories. Copies are available for purchase in Mount Pleasant at Pulpfiction Books – 2422 Main Street and in Chinatown at Massy Books – 229 E Georgia St. It makes a great gift or stocking stuffer for your favourite local history buff!


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