The Long Island Music & Entertainment Hall of Fame (LIMEHOF) recently announced the grand opening of the organization’s first physical facility and Long Island’s very first Hall of Fame at 97 Main St. in Stony Brook Village. The location is near other Long Island cultural centers including The Long Island Museum, The Jazz Loft and The Reboli Center.
“We are thrilled our organization has found a permanent home in such a wonderful location,” LIMEHOF Chairman Ernie Canadeo said. “We’re excited to be able to share our world-class displays and unique memorabilia collection that showcases Long Island’s rich and diverse musical and entertainment history in new and exciting ways. We feature different and exciting exhibits, displays, videos and education offerings that make the center a dynamic place for people to visit on a regular basis.”
Founded in 2004, the nonprofit LIMEHOF is dedicated to the idea that Long Island’s musical heritage is an important resource to be celebrated and preserved for future generations. The organization, which encompasses New York State’s Nassau, Suffolk, Queens and Kings (Brooklyn) Counties, was created as a place of community that inspires and explores Long Island music in all its forms. To date, the organization has inducted more than 100 musicians and music industry executives, and offers education programs and scholarships, and awards to Long Island students and educators. LIMEHOF has strong associations and community support, including Catholic Health, which is the presenting sponsor and a strong supporter.
More than 250 guests and inductees recently attended a special VIP preview event on Nov. 22 to see the first exhibit. Inductees in attendance included founding and current members of Blue Öyster Cult (bassist Joe Bouchard, Albert Bouchard and drummer Jules Radino), Zebra (guitarist Randy Jackson, bassist Felix Hanemann and drummer Guy Gelso), The Brooklyn Bridge (Jimmy Rosica), Parrish Smith from EPMD, Granddaddy IU, and Twisted Sister (guitarist Jay Jay French and Mark “The Animal” Mendoza), Music journalist Wayne Robins, John Gatto from The Good Rats, singer/songwriter Jen Chapin, Paula Janis and Carole Demas of The Magic Garden, singer/songwriter Elliott Murphy, Ira Maltz, CSS Security. Stanton Anderson (Mark Fowler), LIMEHOF board member Sandra Taylor (daughter of LIMEHOF inductee Sam Taylor) and Lawrence Worrell, stage name L.A.W. from Planet 12 (grandson of LIMEHOF inductee Sam Taylor) and more. There were also live performances by Zebra, The Blue Öyster Cult, Jen Chapin, Paula Janis and Carole Demas of The Magic Garden and other inductees.
North Babylon Resident Cliff Schlesinger was the first public visitor to the Long Island Music and Entertainment Hall of Fame when it opened on Nov. 25. Schlesinger says he was most excited to see the first exhibit, “Long Island’s Legendary Club Scene–1960’s to 1980’s,” which is designed to be a club crawl through Long Island’s legendary ‘60s, ‘70s and ‘80s club scene.
“We used to go everywhere from Speaks in Island Park to The Mad Hatter in Stony Brook,” Schlesinger said. “We used to go everywhere… Twisted Sister and Zebra and all those bands so I can’t wait to see that exhibit.”
The first exhibit features replicas of clubs, with videos of artists performing, ads, posters, instruments and an exact replica of a typical 1960’s stage, with vintage equipment and sound system. There is also a permanent “Hall of Fame” with plaques and exhibits recognizing more than 120 inductees, as well as areas for a library, classrooms for educational programs and master classes, a surround -sound theater and a gift shop with music and entertainment themed memorabilia.
There is a wide range of compelling visual elements and rare artifacts on display throughout the building. Inducted artists who have donated their memorabilia include Billy Joel, Joan Jett, Debbie Gibson, Blue Öyster Cult, Twisted Sister and families and estates of Harry Chapin, Guy Lombardo, John Coltrane, and so many more. Donations include various musical instruments, performance outfits, vintage automobiles and motorcycles, rare posters and photos, handwritten lyrics and much more.
More than 500 public visitors came out to see LIMEHOF on its opening weekend. Also, LIMEHOF Inductee Richie Cannata performed on stage along with Mark Newman and LIMEHOF Long Island Sound Award Winner Kerry Kearney.
The Hall of Fame and Museum is open Wednesdays to Sundays, from noon through 5 p.m. Admission prices are adult $19.50, seniors (65+) and veterans $17, Students (with identification) $15. children under 12 are free. Tickets can be purchased online at the www.LIMEHOF.org website and at the door.
—Submitted by the Long Island Music & Entertainment Hall of Fame