Historic Fayette County Dance Hall for Sale

Who wants to buy a century old landmark?

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The Emotions, hailing from Shiner, TX, with a 38-year history, get the crowd moving. The hall has been played by the likes of Texas icons Bob Wills, BJ Thomas, Roy Head, Johnny Winters, and more recent stars such as Kevin Fowler, Roger Creager, Amber Digby, Wild River Band, and Asleep at the Wheel. (photo by Annalise Pasztor)

Each week this summer, some 600 teenagers have flocked to the summer dance series hosted by Mark Hybner’s band The Emotions. Driving up to one such dance well after 10pm on a breezy Wednesday night in July, the crowds seem to have materialized out of thin air. The town of Swiss Alp consists of a stretch of highway, a church, and vast rolling hills scattered with ranches, but for half a mile surrounding the dance hall, both sides of a small country road are lined with pickup trucks. Girls sporting the standard denim-shorts-and-boots attire walk in the middle of the road, illuminated by the shine of impatient headlights as a truck full of high school boys lays on the horn. The young crowd comes from all over, some traveling from as far as San Antonio, Austin, and Houston. They dance until midnight to a broad range of country, rock, and pop.

photo by Annalise Pasztor

“We love to play at Swiss,” says Emotions lead singer Amanda Bryan. “The energy here is amazing. When you’ve got six or seven hundred teenagers that are going absolutely crazy dancing, it makes you feel alive.” Teens aren’t the only ones that experience the magic of dancing under Swiss Alp’s high wooden ceiling. Saturdays drew a similarly large adult crowd every week until recently, when current owners Kevin and Donna Ustynik decided to take a step back and retire. (Despite more than 100 bids on their dance hall, the eBay auction ended on July 5 without the reserve price being met.)

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