Devils Lake Amusement Park - Manitou Beach MI 

Address: 1235 Elm Street
City: Manitou Beach
State: MI
Zip: 49253
County: Lenawee
Number of visits to this page: 56387

Please note that location entries may feature older photos or post card views that may not represent the current appearance, features, addresses, phone numbers, or contact names of the attraction. This site is intended to be a historical as well as current record of various attractions but it is not always possible to have up-to-date information due to the vast number of locations featured here. We ask you consult the propietor for current information.

General Information:

Update May 2023: A road trip to the area revealed the old dance pavilion/IGA store has been torn down. See photo below. Here is a nice story about the building from Dan Cherry: Jerry’s Pavilion Market.

AKA Lakeview Park

This began when the Lakeview Dance Pavilion, which opened July 4, 1914. Big-name groups The McFarland Twins and The Victors performed there in the 1930s, according to Lenawee County historian Dan Cherry. By the 1940s, it was drawing even bigger bands, including those led by Guy Lombardo and Tommy Dorsey.

O.E. "Pokey" Green, who had worked several years as a hardware and implement salesman, arrived in 1945 to manage the pavilion. He told the Citizen Patriot he first became interested in dance pavilions in the 1920s when he called square dances in the summer. In 1955, as the big-band era was dying out and rock 'n' roll was being born, Green bought the business.

"I could see great possibilities in the field of entertainment and recreation," he told the Citizen Patriot in June 1966. "The kids need a place to blow off steam." Green was committed to hiring only groups that ranked high on popular lists.

"People are hungry for entertainment – good entertainment – and that's what I intend to give them," he said. Teens heard Del Shannon sing his No. 1 hit "Runaway" there. Roy Orbison, the Mindbenders, the Animals, Freddie and the Dreamers, Brenda Lee, Frankie Avalon, Joey Dee and the Starliters, Bobbie Vinton, Paul & Paula, the Four Seasons and more all crossed the stage.

On Sept. 2, 1963, the original pavilion burned to the ground in a fire caused by faulty wiring in the band shell. Green rebuilt a 16,000-square-foot building he called Devil's Lake Pavilion. It opened in April 1964.

Then, on April 11, 1965 – Palm Sunday – that pavilion was destroyed by an EF4 tornado that caused widespread damage throughout southern Michigan.

After surveying the damage, Green told the Citizen Patriot he thought about not rebuilding. But he did, and this time it was a 20,000-square-foot building. Green's Pavilion opened on Labor Day 1965 to a paid attendance of 10,000.

By the summer of 1966, more than 1,000 teens a week were coming to the pavilion, which was open Wednesday through Sunday nights during the summer and weekends in the winter.

Between big-name acts, up-and-coming bands played Green's Pavilion. This included Jimmy Page and Jeff Beck, who performed with the Yardbirds on Aug. 10, 1966. Bob Seger and his first band, the Last Heard, also played there.

In 1969, Green retired and turned the business over to his son Jack so he and his wife, Ethel, a Lenawee County teacher and former principal of Jackson's Tomlinson School, could relax at their Wampler's Lake home.

Jack Green was a World War II Army Air Corps veteran who became a nightclub and Broadway song and dance man and then manager of a commercial film studio in San Francisco.

Green died in April 1970 at age 72. According to Cherry, the pavilion was sold in 1973 to the Tibbs family, who converted it into the Tibbs Bros. Pavilion grocery store.

In 2013, Jerry's Market bought the store, revamped it and renamed it Jerry's Pavilion Market, Cherry said. Sections of the original wooden dance floor still are in the store, he said. [MLive Leanne Smith 2013]

Click the following links for locations of interest nearby:
Info Updates:
3/2/2021 - Rick
My Cousins lived at Devils Lake in the mid 60s to mid 70s. Always had a great time visiting there. Saw Strawberry Alarm Clock at Greens but I don't have the specific date. I remember a local band called The Wrenched Souls.
8/12/2018 - Elwood Van Loon
My name is Elwood/Reno and I played at the pavilion in Devils Lake with a band called the Cimbalas. Would love to hear from any of the guys. Stan House, Tom Armstrong, Lenny Liberato, Dick Macon.
2/22/2018 - Nina A Long
I was born at Addison Hospital in 1947 but we lived in Manitou Beach on the boulevard. At the end of the street was a one room school house I attended there for first grade and also went to kindergarten in Addison my teachers name was Mrs. Miller. I remember going down and riding the Merry Go Round. My dad was the station agent at the depot in Manitou his name was Millard Long. We moved from there before I entered 2nd grade because my dad was transferred for his job. There was an ice cream store also at the end of a street downtown that I remember my grandfather taking me too. I remember Lintton's gas station that was across from the depot. They lived in back of the gas station and they were originally from Kentucky. We lived next to Harold Chase and his wife. They grew berries in their back yard and a little friend and I Bruce Talmadge use to go over and pick and eat them. She use to come out her back door with a broom to chase us away. Thanks for letting me reminisce. You are welcome to correct all my spelling errors.
9/29/2014 - Don Campbell
My uncle, Charles Campbell, owned a grocery store on the South East corner of Townley Hwy and Manitou Rd. Our family also rented from Mrs. Switzenberg and my father paid for the cottage by repairing her farm machinery. Roller skating at the outdoor roller rink was a highlight every summer.
5/11/2014 - Lindar
I was at Greens either 67 or 68. Saw the Yardbirds play. Jimmy Page Eric Clapton I think Jeff Beck was anyone else there it was in the summer.
2/1/2014 - John Stange
I remember performing at Green's Pavilion in the late '60's with The Troyes from Battle Creek. I was pleasantly suprised to see the name on the venues sign. Mr. Green was a very nice man and we enjoyed playing there very much. The crowds were most appreiciative.
4/13/2013 - Jody Ackley
I am writing my second book and in the chapter I am currenty editing I have a segment about the Devils Lake Pavilion. It was 1964-1966 and I was a teenagers. What amazing times. We waited each week for Saturday night.
3/20/2013 - Charles Burdette
My name is Chuck Burdette. I was in the house band , The Torquays that played at the pavilion during Mr Greens ownership. large building, huge dance floor, with large stage at one end. Mr Green ran two bands a night. I can remember playing with the Frantics, and even got to play with Bob seger System one night when they were just about to break out with the song Heavy music. I have so many fond memories of Greens. A biig part of my late 60s and early 70s.
7/15/2012 - Connie LeSage Dorr
Having spent summers on Round Lake throughout the late 50s and 60s, these photos and postings generate fond memories, particularly of Green's Pavilion, the Ski Devils, swimming, roller skating on 'Buddies Night' for half-price, and the row of stores in Manitou Beach. Hi Cheryl.
4/12/2012 - Cheryl Anderson Johnson
I also loved the Pavillion and the house bands were great! My family bought on Geneva Hwy, Round Lake in 1950. I was able to spend all my summers growing up on that wonderful lake. 12 years ago we bought on Hallenbeck a cottage. That cottage was built in 1966 after the orignal was destroyed in the 1965 Palm Sunday tornado. The location of our cottage was right down from the stream that was talked about. 5 years ago we tore that cottage down and have since built a new year round place on the site. What a wonderful life to ski all day. roller skate, dance at Greens!!!!!.
1/29/2012 - ron derossett
i played guitar at green's pavilion in 1967 and 1968 with a band called the 8th edition. we were one of the regular bands that worked for mr. green. we worked many times with a band called the pack who later became grand funk railroad. a great band and a great group of guys. i moved to phoenix in the fall of 1968 with my parents and two brothers. my dad also helped in building the m. i. s. working for klump brothers sand and gravel.
1/2/2012 - Jeff Knapp
I hope I got the year correct for the tornado. I had told my parents once when coming home from Grand Rapids that I was taking a way home via round lake, told her I will look for the tree that over hung the lake and I will recognize it and than look for the cottage as it sat on the other side of the road. Old fashion cottage with great homemade quilts and the smell of the wood in the cottage just made it a great life experience. Every time I visit Toledo to see family I want to make time just to drive around the lake and know I will not recognize it much at all, just want to take my wife up that way to show her where I spent some great times of my young life. Does anyone remember the garbage pick up lady owner,,,GARBAGE ANNIE is what I remember.
1/2/2012 - Jeff Knapp
My name is Jeff Knapp, I have fond memories of this lake back in 50 and 60's as we would always have the cottage nearest a farm that MRS SWITZENBERG owned along with the cottage. Spelling of last name may be way off. I was sadden to find out years later the cottage was destroyed by those tornadoes in 1974. My dad was a TOLEDO POLICE OFFICER, and I remember alot of his co-workes would come to the cottage. The fishing was awesome, and remember going to the middle of this lake and you can stand up on this rock bottom. Round lake is where I learned to water ski. I remember going frogging down the road where there was bend and a small stream to catch frogs. I revisited this area numerous times when I would come home from Grand Rapids Michigan where I resided for almost two years and I loved that state and the rivers and lakes, but now live in a nice state called Pennsylvania. I would move back to Michigan in a blink of an eye.
11/3/2011 - Donald Kittle
Hi, my name is Don Kittle and I grew up at Manitou Beach in the early 60s. I lived on Chestnut street by the church, it was a great place to live. I went to the old pavilon almost every Sat. night, I was there to see the first One burn down, that was a very sad thing to watch. I had a lot of good friends Which I would like to see again someday. I was still living there when the tornado Hit Devils lake and took a lot of trees and houses, what a mess. Then about 65 I got married And moved away, I still miss the place that is was in the early 60s. You have great web site Please keep it going, Don.
6/25/2011 - Jim Eule
I was raised in manitou beach around 1955. My grandfather, Marvin Cobb, ran the boathouse just down from the grove. I loved growing up around the boathouse. I recently visited the area in 2011 and actually saw the little green schoolhouse that I attended first grade. I can't believe all the fond memories that this visit brought back.
2/24/2011 - david poe
I used to play in a band called the frantics at the block pavilian back in the 60's. I still remember the sound of that awsome p. a. system. places like that just don't excist any more. just good to think back to the days that I was almost a rock star. we were still playing there, I think, when the tornado hit and took away my home away from home. those were the good ol' days.
2/6/2011 - Peggy Mayer
I was looking to see if the Water Ski group Ski Devils were still active. Devils Lake was a great place to live.
12/26/2010 - richard merrill
I saw Frankie Avalon at the Devils Lake Pavilion in the late 50's. A band played there called the Cymbalas. the singer was Mac Vickery, who went on to some fame as a songwriter in Nashville.
8/6/2007 - Wes Boyd
The old Manitou Beach amusement park -- I remember it well from when I was a kid. There was quite a bit more there than indicated in the postings. There was a merry-go-round that I remember well -- it was there for many, many years, located about in the center of the picture you have marked "where the rides were". There were more rides on the far (east) side of the Pavilion. I remember a little, probably about 12" gauge kid's train that ran on an oval in the area; I rode it many times. If I recall correctly it was powered by a one-lung lawnmower engine, and resembled a diesel of the postward Electromotive persuasion. I'm not sure if my memory is correct or what, but I seem to recall it was painted for the Santa Fe. I believe there were some other rides in the area at one time or another but have no clear memory of them. There were also several concession booths to the east of the train ride -- the one I remember is a shooting gallery but there were others. The amusement park slid downhill through the late fifties and early sixties, although some things remained right up until the end -- one of my best friend's families ran the minature golf course that was located across the road roughly to the southeast of the current Tibbs IGA. This whole area, especially to the southeast of the current grocery store, was a nicely wooded place with lots of old growth trees and picnic tables. I remember a political rally held there in 1964 when then-governor John Swainson gave a real barn-burner of a speech, lambasting the Republicans I presume. I must have been there some time between then and the Palm Sunday tornado in 1965, although I have no particular memory of it. The tornado gave the whole area a direct hit. Virtually all of the old growth trees went down, along with the second Green's Lakeside Pavilion and the old hotel, and the area just never recovered to anything like a semblance of what it had been before the disaster. Looking back at from half a century I suppose it was all pretty small, but I had lots of fun there as a little kid and it was a real treat to be taken up to ride the merry go round and the train, visit the shooting gallery, and the like. It was a more innocent time of simpler pleasures, and now gone except in memory. A few weeks after the tornado I drove by a nearby gravel pit where much of the storm debris had been taken, and it about filled the place. The debris was being burnt and it made me think of the fires of hell. I did not realize at the time that the whole way of life of the lakes I'd grown up with was burning before my eyes, and that things would never be the same.
10/22/2006 - Martha McKie
"Old Dance Hall" "Devil's Lake Pavilion" My grandparents lived at Manitou Beach on Devil's Lake, and we spent weekends there throughout my childhood, from the early 60s. The night that the (so-called) "Old Dance Hall" burned down, our parents woke us very early in the morning, and we walked there. They had already been up for a few hours, and said that the flames had been visible above the trees, as they looked toward the fire, down the shore from our place. What I remember most vividly of the scene when we arrived there was that there was nothing but ashes, and the harp of a piano, remaining on the ground. Before that fire, occasionally on Saturday nights, our parents would walk with us down to the dance hall to see "the teenagers" dancing, and hear the exotic sounds of electric guitars playing rock-and-roll. We could watch through large screened windows all around the sides. Also, I and my siblings and cousins remember very well riding on the Merry-Go-Round that was at the top of the hill as you approached the dance hall area. But, this story continues! The Greens, who owned the dance hall, rebuilt a dance place on the same property, and it was very large, and it was built of cinder block. There weren't windows to watch through anymore, and then, as we grandchildren grew nearer to being teenagers ourselves, our grandparents used to say that there were teenager fights at the dance hall, now called "Green's Pavilion". Before two years had passed, the Palm Sunday Tornado of 1965 took the huge cinder block building down!! It was quickly rebuilt, but the dance traffic seemed to die away as the 70s approached, and the Greens sold the building to the Tibbses, who relocated their grocery store to the site of "The Old Dance Hall", still now named "The Pavilion" in it's new grocery store incarnation. I was delighted to see a photograph on your website of Tibb's old store on Elm Street. My grandparents lived across the Boulevard on the next street over, and my cousins, siblings and I trod many dusty barefoot "miles", to Tibbs store buying milk, bread, eggs, comic books, Coca Cola, hot-dog buns, all in separate trips of course. commissioned by our Grandma Lois at about 25c a trip!!
4/19/2003 - WaterWinterWonderland
A recent visit to the area finally revealed the location of the long forgotten amusement park. According to some nice local folks, the IGA pictured here was the dance pavillion for the park, with the rides and attractions surrounding it.
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Dance Hall
Dance Hall
Devils Lake Amusement Park - The Lakeview Dance Pavilion In 1928 From Dan Cherry
The Lakeview Dance Pavilion In 1928 From Dan Cherry
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Shuffleboard In 1933 From Dan Cherry
Shuffleboard In 1933 From Dan Cherry
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Palm Sunday Tornado Damage 1965 From Dan Cherry
Palm Sunday Tornado Damage 1965 From Dan Cherry
Devils Lake Amusement Park - 1964 Shot From Dan Cherry
1964 Shot From Dan Cherry
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Mini Golf From Dan Cherry
Mini Golf From Dan Cherry
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Mini Golf From Dan Cherry
Mini Golf From Dan Cherry
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Lakeview Dance Pavilion From Dan Cherry
Lakeview Dance Pavilion From Dan Cherry
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Mcfarland Twins Orchestra 1930S From Dan Cherry
Mcfarland Twins Orchestra 1930S From Dan Cherry
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Greens Pavillion From Dan Cherry
Greens Pavillion From Dan Cherry
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Inside Greens Pavillion 1966 From Dan Cherry
Inside Greens Pavillion 1966 From Dan Cherry
Devils Lake Amusement Park - From Swan Tower
From Swan Tower
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Dance Hall
Dance Hall
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Near The Diamond T Ranch Drive-In
Near The Diamond T Ranch Drive-In
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Aerial Photo
Aerial Photo
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Stores
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Cedar Point
Cedar Point
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Yacht Club
Yacht Club
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Manitou Beach Mi Greens Pavilion
Manitou Beach Mi Greens Pavilion
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Greens Pavillion Early 2002
Greens Pavillion Early 2002
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Manitou Beach Devils Lake
Manitou Beach Devils Lake
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Store
Devils Lake Amusement Park - White Swan Electic Tower
White Swan Electic Tower
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Hotel
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Parking Lot In Front Of Pavillion
Parking Lot In Front Of Pavillion
Devils Lake Amusement Park - May 2023 - Pavillion Building Gone
May 2023 - Pavillion Building Gone
Devils Lake Amusement Park - July 28 1928 Article On Lightning Strike
July 28 1928 Article On Lightning Strike
Devils Lake Amusement Park - May 16 1952 Ad For Lakeview Park
May 16 1952 Ad For Lakeview Park
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Greens Pavillion
Greens Pavillion
Devils Lake Amusement Park - Addison Centennial 1834-1934 100 Years Of Progress
Addison Centennial 1834-1934 100 Years Of Progress © 2024 Over 73,688,092 Served