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The Stardust Ballroom is located in McLoud Plaza.
Geoff Pickle | SBJ
The Stardust Ballroom is located in McLoud Plaza.

Springfield entrepreneur opening retro ballroom

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A Springfield serial entrepreneur is bringing a retro entertainment concept to town that hearkens back to the days of big band music and ballroom attire.

Mark Burgess said an opening tomorrow night is planned for The Stardust Ballroom at 305 W. Walnut Lawn St., Suite TT, in McLoud Plaza. The 5,500-square-foot space has a bar, dance floor and table service.

"I've had it in my head for several years," he said.

Burgess said the ballroom, with capacity for 130 people, would have a house band that includes an upright bass, drummer, guitar player, pianist and brass instruments. The Stardust Ballroom will have a $25 entry fee with reservations required, as well as a dress code that includes cocktail attire and suits, and customers will be encouraged not to take phone calls inside the venue.

"All of this is designed to where once you step into it, it's taking you back," Burgess said.

While not age restricted, The Stardust Ballroom is designed for older adults, he said.

"Our goal is to reach out to all of the retirement villages in town," Burgess said, pointing to a goal of providing a safe experience for customers. "We'll have security staff on the door. We've got security cameras all over the place, as well."

Startup expenses have not been fully tallied for the project that included a renovation of the space, said Burgess. He said he signed a lease for undisclosed terms with McLoud and Co. LLC.

Burgess also is the owner of the Ozarks Lunkers, The Arena League football team that begins play this summer at Ozark Empire Fairgrounds’ Wilson Logistics Arena. He additionally operates Burgess Aircraft Management LLC dba OzAir Charter Services, and he has experience with ventures such as Aviary Cafe, according to past reporting.

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sheliaofficeemail@yahoo.com

I certainly hope the new ballroom is a success. If I could ever get the retired hubby into anything but sneakers and ratty blue jeans, I would love to go! This is the guy I married 44 years ago who wanted to practice medicine in Padre Island, Tx. because every one there wears cut offs and tennis shoes. I pointed out to him in 1983 there was no medical services in the town. He looked into it and said I was correct. I was able to get the beach out of the bum, but the bum is still hanging around!

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