1948 – 2017
Belgian Club ready to rock
Submitted on Wed, 08/15/2012 - 12:00am
The Delhi Belgian Club has played host to a lot of great rock acts over its long and storied history.
In fact, the club’s record as a venue for popular music equals or exceeds most any club in south-central Ontario.
The Belgian Hall played host a couple years ago to a sold-out show featuring Toronto rocker David Wilcox. More recently, Canadian rockers Helix with original front man Michael Vollmer also graced the stage in Delhi.
Since then there’s been a break in the action, but that’s about to change. The silence ends next month on Harvestfest weekend when the fabulous 905 Band makes its Delhi debut.
The 905 Band consists of a dozen skilled musicians who have played and recorded with Canadian music legends such as Lighthouse, Crowbar, David Clayton Thomas, Paul Anka and the Downchild Blues Band. The band is noteworthy for its killer horn section and its powerful renditions of popular tunes by the likes of Supertramp, Chicago, Blood Sweat & Tears, the Electric Light Orchestra and Steely Dan to name a few.
“I just love an 11-piece brass band,’ says Marc Vandenbussche, president of the Belgian Club. “They get that saxophone going and it’s just really good. That’s the next kick-ass thing we have going.”
Proceeds from the 905 performance are earmarked for making the washrooms in the hall’s lounge handicapped-accessible.
The 905 Band represents a kickstart to the live musical tradition at the club. Coming down the pipe in November is a performance by Evolution, a spot-on tribute band that specializes in the music by the popular rock group Journey.
“We’re trying to get people back into the building again,” says Randy Casier, general manager of the hall. “We’re trying to bring Delhi alive again. Delhi’s been suffering in this area for a while now.”
It was only a matter of time before someone decided to take advantage of the club’s huge performance area. The venue can accommodate a crowd of 600 comfortably. This and the club’s crack kitchen staff have made the Belgian Hall a mainstay in the local area for major conferences, parties, weddings and receptions.
The Belgian Hall has been evolving in this area as well. There was a time not long ago when a banquet at the club could be relied upon to feature the hall’s famous breaded chicken, cabbage rolls and roast beef.
These options remain, but the menu has since diversified to include chicken Alfredo, London broil, salmon and fancy hors d’oeuvres. Skinless chicken has been added now that more people are paying attention to healthy eating.
“We run our kitchen country-style,” Casier said. “Our staff is very good at what they do. If you come away hungry, it’s your own fault.”
Additional projects on the agenda include a makeover of the building’s exterior walls to match the gorgeous $90,000 renovation that was recently completed at the front of the building.
The club executive is also working with Norfolk County to bring Pine Street and Queen Street up to standard so that the popular Belgian Days bicycle races can resume. As it stands, the streets are too pitted to accommodate the level of competition.