MUSIC

El Mocambo Saved By Michael Wekerle Of 'Dragon's Den'

11/06/2014 03:05 EST | Updated 11/06/2014 03:59 EST
Vince Talotta via Getty Images
TORONTO, ON - JUNE 2: Workers finish a $16,000 restoration-job on the legendary El Mocambo nightclub's sign at Spadina Ave. and College St. yesterday. The Elmo's sign, which went up in the '50s, has been broken for a decade. (Vince Talotta/Toronto Star via Getty Images)

The El Mocambo, one of Canada's most historic music venues, was to take its final bow tonight, Nov. 6. But reports of the ElMo's death proved greatly exaggerated when 'Dragon's Den' star and Bay Street mogul Michael Wekerle stepped in to save the day at the last minute.

According to the CBC, Wekerle put down a deposit to purchase the Spadina street club -- famed for hosting performances by acts ranging from The Rolling Stones and U2 to Arcade Fire -- and will be handed the keys onstage tonight at a benefit concert for the Parkinson’s disease charity Light of Day Canada featuring John Cafferty and the Beaver Brown Band. The deal will reportedly close by mid-January.

According to its website, the venue first hosted music events back in 1850 and added its famed neon palm tree sign in 1946. The sign was controversially put up for sale on eBay last month, a listing which now says it was "ended by the seller because the item is no longer available." According to the Toronto Star, owner Sam Grosso caved to pressure to preserve it.

"Everybody wants to know about this fucking sign. If people cared as much about the business as the sign, we wouldn't have a problem with the sign," he griped to the Star earlier this week.

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