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Carlton Celebrity Room

Bloomington yesterday: Seeing shows at the Carlton Celebrity Room

Step back to the ’70s and ’80s when a little bit of Las Vegas lived in Bloomington. The Carlton Celebrity Room, 8350 24th Avenue South, put top entertainment in the spotlight. Everyone from Prince to Pearl Bailey to Pat Boone to Charley Pride performed at the popular nightclub. Who could forget Charo, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis or the Monkees? The performance lineup embodied the best of rock ’n’ roll, pop, country, jazz and even musicals.

First dates, anniversaries, awards and music parties were among the many celebrations that took place in the wedge-shaped venue. Maybe you saw a show or two there?

In 1986, the Carlton Celebrity went bankrupt and was razed the following year. Later, Mall of America was constructed at the site. Take pause, listen up—there’s still music in the air.