You might say Blue Heron Lakehouse is made for music and dancing.
A small clue is the Sonos speakers in nearly every room of the house, which offers a remarkably rich, surround-sound experience. We upgraded to Sonos Five this year, which absolutely immerses you in soundwaves from a wide frequency range.
Whenever we’re staying at the lake house you can bet Brian cranks up the tunes. He’s a committed audiophile and a rock-and-roll enthusiast. If you’re a rock lover and get a chance to talk to him about his experience in the field, you’ll be sure to hear some entertaining stories. He has a unique insider’s view from his earlier career in the business side of rock-and-roll touring. He had the amazing opportunity to go on European tours with Michael Jackson, Elton John, Prince and other rock luminaries.
Whatever kind of music you most enjoy, it’s easily accessible thanks to our Sonos system, which offers options from Deezer to Pandora, Amazon Music to Spotify, Apple Music to Google Play Music, and lots of others. It’s so easy to use.
We enjoy bright and brassy ‘70s music while doing things around the house, jazz soundscapes while making dinner and Motown hits during long conversational evenings. And when friends join us Sonos is essentially a built-in DJ that turns our place into a dance party. Yes, nearly every party we have involves dancing.
One of our home’s features was inspired by a dance party. When I turned 60, we held a birthday bash at the lake with, ironically, 60 of my friends. I’ve been a dancer my entire life. I learned Charleston from my grandma Nessie, a talented Vaudeville-style dancer, and have danced my way through the decades ever since, sometimes teaching, sometimes performing, but always deeply enjoying everything from salsa to swing, nightclub two-step to tango.
Many, if not most, of my friends, are also terpsichoreans (a fancy word for dancers), and with the summertime party coming up we wanted to have a summer night dance party on the waterfront. The one hitch: The surface of the Lakeside Terrace was cement, not a very forgiving surface. Then serendipity stepped in.
I got a Facebook notification from a friend who had seen a post about someone giving away vintage dance floor tiles in North Seattle. I jumped at the chance. Within hours our trailer was groaning with a towering heap of snap-together tiles in a wonderful array of blues, from baby to sky.
It was a two-day project to lay them out and line everything up. We didn’t get it right on the first try, or even the second. It was a hair-pulling project that required precision and patience in equal measure. But once done, to our complete surprise, we had exactly enough to cover the entire terrace—and not one tile more.
The party, on a warm evening with stars reflected in the calm lake, was everything we’d hoped it would be, and the dance floor met all our expectations and more. The surface was just right for fast footwork, spins and controlled dips, and my friends and I pulled out all the stops, dancing to tunes from Frank Sinatra to Bruno Mars.
The addition of a silent disco element (everyone wears a headset with three channels of music that they can change whenever they want) had everyone bobbing to their own beat and singing out loud. If you’re not familiar with silent disco, do yourself a favor and look it up on YouTube—it’s a blast, and hilarious to watch. Our exuberance burst out into a conga line down the dock and back at one point. Thankfully, no one went into the drink!
After the floor’s christening we couldn’t possibly part with it. Though now it’s just a tad ragged around the edges we’ve found it to be a durable, forgiving and cheery surface that makes the Lakeside Terrace a comfortable spot to hang out.
As we found on that dreamlike summer evening and at gatherings before and since, experiencing music (and dance, of course) together is not only an icebreaker, it’s a magical ingredient that fills a gathering with joy and commonality. The best part: With our Sonos system it’s easy to find your own musical muse. A young guest visiting with his family recently said: “It’s a super nice place and I had fun jamming to tunes throughout the house!”
Way to go, Evan. You cracked the code of one of the most joyous ways to experience Blue Heron Lakehouse.