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Dizzy Gillespie Homesite Park

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Gallery Image # 6

Known to the world as "Dizzy", Gillespie was the youngest of nine children born in a home on this site on October 21, 1917. Easily the most recognizable face in jazz with his great ballooning cheeks and trademark bent trumpet, Gillespie began playing piano at the age of four and was introduced to the trumpet at age 12. The Gillespie's modest home here on Huger Street was within walking distance of every building important in young Dizzy's life, including Wesley Methodist Episcopal Church and Robert Smalls School. By age 22, Dizzy was playing for Cab Calloway, one of the most successful bandleaders of the time. In 1990, Dizzy received a Kennedy Center Honors for his outstanding lifetime achievement in the performing arts. To honor Dizzy, the Town of Cheraw dedicated this park in October, 2002. South Carolina artist Bob Doster worked with Cheraw-area children to create the park's modern sculpture and eclectic stainless steel benches. Doster also crafted the stainless steel fence depicting the notes to "Salt Peanuts", one of Dizzy's best-known works.

Tags: Arts Cheraw Arts Commission Community South Carolina Jazz Festival

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