During the 1950’s Rainbow
Garden continued to attract crowds with its big band sound, but big
bands and dance halls were on the decline. World War II caused bands
to break up when their musicians were drafted, gas rationing restricted
travel, the emerging music trend of rock ‘n’ roll started replacing
the big band sound, and many dance halls around the country began closing.
In the late 1950s Rainbow Garden was subjected to several raids by state liquor control agents. Bob Wingard and band leader Terry Burke recalled several of these raids.
Terry [Burke] remembered the first raid.
Appearing before the mayor of Fremont, Bob pleaded not guilty. The mayor ruled not guilty and dismissed the charges.
During the last raid, Terry’s band attempted to thwart the efforts of the arresting officers.
[Excerpted from John Moor, "See You At Rainbow," The Bridge, June 2, 1988]
Because of the arrests and negative publicity generated by the liquor raids, Wingard decided to close the Rainbow Garden in 1959, converting it to a manufacturing plant. Atlas Industries, Inc. currently occupies the building.
- Written by Cheryl Laugherty -
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