Bring out your inner party animal with The Rock Dogs at Music on the Mountain

Roaring Fork Valley locals The Rock Dogs will take the stage this Saturday, August 24th. It’s the last concert for the month of August, so bring your family and friends for one last celebration of summer before we head into fall!

The popular band plays all over the Western Slope (they’ve appeared at Mountain Fair, Strawberry Days, and the Redstone Castle just to name a few) as well as in Moab and other spots across the region. Glenwood Caverns is pleased to bring their cheerful sound and easygoing attitudes to the Adventure Park!

The Rock Dogs bring fun and danceable tunes to Music on the Mountain Saturday, August 24th

We spoke with bassist Tom Mercer, one third of the trio that makes up The Rock Dogs along with Dale Loper on guitar and Dan Brennan-Combs on drums (Tom and Dale trade off on lead vocals throughout their shows).

GCAP: So how did The Rock Dogs get their start?
TM: We started playing together in 1991. We came together from a variety of different bands, but we didn’t know each other that well. So you could definitely say that music brought us together.

GCAP: What kind of music do you guys play?
TM: We play rock music, spanning from the 1960’s to today. It’s not hard rock, though…you aren’t going to hear any metal or acid rock. It’s all upbeat stuff, that you can either dance to or enjoy listening to. We play some originals but mostly covers. Different songs work with different crowds, so we try to pick what we think will work for the crowd in front of us.

GCAP: So who are your favorite artists to cover?
TM: Well, whatever will get people up and moving around. The Beatles, Toad the Wet Sprocket, Bruce Springsteen…those are a few of our favorites, but it’s really all over the place. The main rule is that is has to be crowd pleasing.

GCAP:
Any memorable shows from all your years together?
TM: One thing that sticks out is a show seven or eight years ago, we were playing on the sun deck on Aspen Mountain. There were a group of people dancing and out of nowhere they formed a human pyramid. There were three or four layers of people. It was really incredible!

GCAP: Besides the possibility of human pyramids, what else can people expect at a Rock Dogs show?
TM: Honestly, just to have a good time, to have fun with their friends. It’s not about the band, it’s about the people. Everything else will just fall into place. It’s all about fun; that’s what we are there for. We don’t take ourselves too seriously.

GCAP: You’ve played at Music on the Mountain in the past, correct?
TM: Yes, we’ve performed twice before. It’s a great venue. People really enjoy being up there. When the weather is good, there’s really nowhere better to play in Glenwood Springs. Plus the staff, especially Bob (Stepniewski, the restaurant and retail manager), has been great to work with.

GCAP: Anything else to share about your upcoming show?
TM:
Just that we are really looking forward to it! And we want to tell people to bring lots of cans of food for Lift-Up, get a free ride up and come see us. It’s a win-win.

For more information, visit Music on the Mountain. Bring at least one can of food to donate and get a free tram ride to the top! Hope to see you there!

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All The Pretty Horses rides into Music on the Mountain

Music on the Mountain’s concert series continues with All The Pretty Horses performing this Saturday, August 17th.

The band is comprised of Olivia Pevec (vocals), Frank Martin (mandolin, guitar, steel guitar, and vocals), Ashton Taufer (upright and electric bass), Mateo Sandate (guitar and vocals), and Aaron Taylor (drums).

The band originally formed around exploring the music of Bob Dylan, but they soon expanded their focus to other legends, including acclaimed country singer George Jones and leading jazz guitarist Bill Frisell. “We also grew passionate about the traditional music from our country’s rough beginnings,” says Ashton Taufer. The mix of influences and genres led the band to create a sound all its own, and today All The Pretty Horses is known as an “American musical melting pot.” They are typically described as country rockers, but they are much more than that. “With our twangy voices, a jazz-trained rhythm section, a pair of tele guitars, plus steel and mandolin, we bring a unique history and passion in music,” says Taufer.

All The Pretty Horses performs this Saturday, August 17th

Having formed in 2010, the group is relatively new but they have already been recognized for their talent. They received 3rd place in the Post Independent’s 2013 Local’s Choice Awards, and also won a “Stevie” for best local band of 2013, an annual award given out by Steve’s Guitars in Carbondale.

The band performs “originals and choice covers that have been rearranged in our own unique way,” says Taufer. “We are moved to discover the beauty that comes with darkness, and we love to make people dance!”

Steve’s Guitars is a favorite spot for the band, and in 2010 they released a live album recording there (they are currently working on a studio album, scheduled for release in 2014). They’ve also made recent appearances at Strawberry Days, Garfield County Fair and the Crested Butte Arts Festival.

You can get in the spirit for their upcoming performance by catching a preview of the band’s original songs and arrangements here.

This weekend will mark All The Pretty Horses’ first show at Glenwood Caverns, so come welcome them to the mountain on Saturday! Along with great music, there will also be drink specials, food, and rides. Bring at least one can of food for a free tram ride to the top. For more information visit Music on the Mountain. See you there!

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Fifty50 promises 100% fun at Music on the Mountain this Saturday

Local’s Choice winners Fifty50 will take the stage August 10th on the Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park stage, as Music on the Mountain returns after a mid-summer hiatus. So, if you’ve put your dancing shoes away, it’s time to dig them back out because Fifty50 will be sure to get you moving!

Fifty50 performs at the return of Music on the Mountain Saturday, August 10

The band is comprised of Beth Getzen Stoltzfus, Dave Stoltzfus, Dale Loper, Jerry Larsen and Brian Brown. “We have such a great chemistry,” says Beth Getzen Stoltzfus. “What sets us apart from other bands is the harmony blend between myself, Dave, and Dale. A lot of our songs are harmonies the whole way through. You don’t see that with a lot of bands.”

The band has been together since their first gig at Rivers Restaurant in Glenwood Springs in 2002, and over the years has developed quite the following in the Roaring Fork Valley. They’ve been honored with Local’s Choice Awards seven times; in 2012 and 2013 those Local’s Choice Awards were gold. “It’s very moving for us that the community chose us,” remarks Stoltzfus. “It’s a big honor. We’re just regular working folk, but music is our passion. We are so happy that people appreciate us.” They play all over the valley at festivals, bars (the Black Nugget in Carbondale is a favorite spot) and private events.

Fifty50 won the gold Local's Choice Award in 2012 and 2013.

“We have so much fun on stage!” exclaims Stoltzfus. “There’s no stress, no egos, we’re just friends–a family, really–and our performances just show our love for each other and for what we do.”

“We try to speak to all ages, from young teenagers to older people,” says Stoltzfus. “We are very eclectic in our choice of music, and there’s something for everyone.” The band performs a mixture of classic rock ‘n’ roll covers (Grace Potter is a favorite of Beth’s) and original songs. The band shares songwriting duties, and often times they will come up with new songs just by playing around at practice. “We’ll get a jam going, add some words, and then we’ll go ‘hey, there’s a song!’”

Beth and Dave were acquaintances before the band formed, and playing together led to a good friendship and then something more. The couple were married in 2007. “We had played Strawberry Days, and right after the show we had a party at our house and got married!” laughs Stoltzfus. “We told our friends we were getting married and they said, ‘Oh, finally, good for you guys, when’s the wedding?’ We said ‘no, you don’t get it–we are getting married right now!’”

This will be the band’s second year playing Music on the Mountain. “We are excited to play there again. The views are so fantastic! The crowd is a lot of fun, and the people that work there are great. It’s a well-rounded experience,” Stoltzfus says.

The name Fifty50 came into being by chance. “We were trying to come up with a band name. I wanted it to be called ‘Before 9’ because I’m always wanting to be in bed at 9pm! But then Dave and I were coming back from Taos, and we saw a road sign for ‘50 west and 50 east…the sign said 50/50. I said, ‘that would be such a great name.’ It’s perfect because Dave and I have a 50/50 partnership, and the interaction between the audience and the band is a 50/50 collaboration…and when you put 50 and 50 together that’s 100%, which is what we put into all our shows!”

“We have had so much support over the years,” says Stoltzfus. “We are just so honored that we can live, work, and play in this valley.”

Join Fifty50 in celebrating our beautiful valley this Saturday, August 10 at Music on the Mountain. As always, there will be drink specials, food, and rides will be open. Bring at least one can of food for a Lift-Up Food Bank donation and get a free tram ride! For more information visit http://glenwoodcaverns.com/music-on-mountain-glenwood-springs.html

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Get outta that heat with a Wild Tour!

Wild Tour at Glenwood Caverns Seems like the mercury is rising just about everywhere … except inside Glenwood Caverns and Historic Fairy Caves. The forecast is calling for a high of 91 in Glenwood Springs, 93 in Denver, 92 in Colorado Springs and a whopping 98 degrees in Grand Junction! The forecast for Glenwood Caverns is always the same: a comfy 52 degrees.

The King’s Row Tour and the new Historic Fairy Caves Tour can get you into this cool cave for 50 minutes each and they’re both a lot of fun. But to really escape the heat, try a Wild Tour. It’s a 2-hour, on-your-belly adventure through rarely visited sections of the cave. You’ll get fitted with a lighted helmet and all of the necessary equipment before joining an experienced caver for an underground exploration you’ll always remember. And, don’t forget, it’s 52 degrees in there!

You’ll need a reservation to get in on a Wild Tour, so call 970-945-4228 or 800-530-1635, ext. 0, to schedule yours today. It’s $60 per person and the minimum age is 10. These photos were taken this week by Wild Tour guide Kathy Miller. Sure looks like they’re having fun!

Couple on Glenwood Caverns Wild TourTight squeeze on the Wild Tour at Glenwood CavernsGlenwood Caverns Wild Tour

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Top Ten Reasons Glenwood Caverns should be the Eighth Wonder of the World

Recently, the Glenwood Springs Chamber Resort Association entered Glenwood Caverns and the Historic Fairy Caves into VirtualTourist.com’s contest to crown “The Eighth Wonder of the World.”

Tourism boards, chambers of commerce and visitor bureaus around the world are sending in nominations to the website, which is a leading travel research website and community. The public is being asked to vote for their favorites out of the more than 200 submissions, and the “Wonder” with the most votes will be crowned the winner and will be featured in a national broadcast TV segment.

The Original Seven Wonders of the World is a list, compiled in the second century B.C., of man-made structures built during the classical era.
The Seven Wonders are:
Great Pyramid of Giza
Hanging Gardens of Babylon
Statue of Zeus at Olympia
Temple of Artemis at Ephesus
Mausoleum at Halicarnassus
Colossus of Rhodes
Lighthouse of Alexandria

We think Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park should be named the Eighth Wonder of the World! While the caves were formed naturally, it definitely took a lot of manpower to get them ready for the public viewing. Charles Darrow and his team first opened the Historic Fairy Caves to visitors in 1895, and the work continues today, with the recent completion of the Historic Fairy Cave Tour, showcasing even more natural beauty and amazing formations.

In the spirit of the Late Show with David Letterman, we’d like to offer our own Top Ten Reasons Glenwood Caverns should be the Eighth Wonder of the World:

Ad from 1897 proclaiming the Fairy Caves as the "Eighth Wonder of the World." It appeared in a publication called the Avalanche Echo.

10) The original owners of Glenwood Caverns claimed it first, in 1897, well before most of the other contestants even existed.

9) Glenwood Springs is a lot easier to find than Ephesus and Halicarnassus!

8) Seeing any of the Seven Wonders means being prepared for sweltering heat: the average summer high in Giza is 96° and in Olympia it is 97°! The Historic Fairy Caves, on the other hand, are a cool 52° year round–perfect for a hot summer day.

7) Most major attractions only invite you to take pictures, but if you take the Wild Tour you’ll be invited to get dirty, crawl on your belly and go deep into rarely visited areas of the caves!

6) We’re not sure, but we don’t think any of the current Seven Wonders offer drink specials and live music (Music on the Mountain at Glenwood Caverns does, though!)

Cave Bacon is formed when the water drops flow down a sloped ceiling of a cave and build up calcite in a thin line before dropping to the floor.

5) The best things in life involve bacon
(cave bacon, that is!)

4) Glenwood Caverns and the Historic Fairy Caves were explored/excavated by enthusiastic cavers, not Greek slaves.

3) You’ve got to go diving underwater to see what’s left of the Lighthouse of Alexandria, but it’s only a short tram ride up Iron Mountain in Glenwood Springs to see the Historic Fairy Caves and King’s Row in the most highly-decorated show cave in Colorado.

Carved wooden bear on guard at Glenwood Caverns

 

2) There are no scary, hollow-eyed, naked Roman statues at Glenwood Caverns, only carved happy Wooden Bears.

1) Many of the Seven Wonders are known for their impressive height—but perched on the edge of the canyon 1300 feet above the Colorado River, Glenwood Caverns stands WAY above them all!

Do you think Glenwood Caverns should be the Eighth Wonder of the World? Cast your vote! Visit www.virtualtourist.com to vote for Glenwood Caverns and the Historic Fairy Caves. Voting is open until Sept. 30.

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Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park Offers Free Funday Passes to Royal Gorge Bridge and Park Annual Passholders

In a show of solidarity for the Colorado amusement industry, loyal fans of the iconic Royal Gorge Bridge and Park have another option this summer, and it’s free. Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park, based in Glenwood Springs, is offering a one-day pass at no cost to all current Royal Gorge annual passholders.

Royal Gorge Bridge and ParkThe owners of Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park know how important loyal fans are to the success of any business and they’re big fans of Royal Gorge Bridge and Park. Following the tragic fire that closed this Colorado landmark, the Adventure Park is offering current Royal Gorge Bridge and Park annual passholders a free one-day pass anytime during 2013. The mountain-top park that’s home to Glenwood Caverns and the Historic Fairy Caves, thrill rides and family activities is based in Glenwood Springs, Colorado.

“Our hearts went out to everyone at Royal Gorge Bridge and Park last week,” said Steve Beckley, who owns Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park with his wife Jeanne. “Each year we take our whole management team to visit another theme park that’s known for its excellent customer service. We visited Royal Gorge in 2011, and everyone had a lot of fun. We were all impressed with their operation and are hopeful that they can rebuild and reopen very soon.”

In the meantime, Royal Gorge passholders can enjoy a day at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park on the house. The Funday Pass includes a ride on the Iron Mountain Tramway and park admission, two walking cave tours and unlimited access to the Alpine Coaster, Giant Canyon Swing, Cliffhanger Roller Coaster, Soaring Eagle Zip Ride, Wild West Express family coaster, Mine Wheel, GiddyUp, Fort WhereAmI giant maze, 4D Motion Theater, climbing wall and laser tag arena.

To claim the free one-day pass, Royal Gorge Bridge and Park annual passholders can bring a valid annual pass and a photo ID to the ticket office at the base of the Iron Mountain Tramway at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park. The offer is limited to one Funday Pass per passholder; for family passes, the offer is good for the same number of family members covered by the Royal Gorge pass. Anyone with questions about the pass is encouraged to call 800-530-1635, ext. 0.

Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park is open daily from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. this summer, with the last tram ride up at 8:30 p.m. For more information, including fall and winter hours of operation, visit http://glenwoodcaverns.com or call 800-530-1635 or 970-945-4228, ext. 0.

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Night Plane Re-Release Offers Vintage Tracks and New Live Recordings

Today’s music scene can be disheartening. It’s often populated by electronica, DJs, and overproduced pop. If you’ve ever felt nostalgic for the good ol’ days of rock ‘n’ roll, when bands played self-written songs with real instruments, Night Plane’s recent re-release of their 1982 album (Night Plane) is just the cure (as is their upcoming show Saturday, June 8th, as part of Glenwood Caverns Adventure Parks’ Music on the Mountain concert series).

The album included a whopping ten musicians, and the resulting tunes are robust, diverse, and plain old fun. The title track, “Night Plane” is straight up rock, with Haden Gregg and Jim Dykann’s powerful vocals and bittersweet lyrics  (“At the station, feeling all alone/this is the time for another home”) complemented by vibrant electric guitar and piano.

Night Plane explores other genres too, with the reggae-inspired track “Tried Too Hard” and the bluesy tune “Line of Fire”(highlighting Bryan Savage’s saxaphone).

Where the album really shines, though, is in the last four bonus tracks, recordings from live performances. Mainly acoustic, the master guitar work on songs like “She’s a Runaway” is beautiful. Gregg and Dykann’s voices have aged well; they sound grittier and more soulful than in the earlier recordings. Their live performances showcase the band in their element–and the results are well worth a listen.

Be sure to catch Night Plane this Saturday at Music on the Mountain! Get more information at http://glenwoodcaverns.com/music-on-mountain-glenwood-springs.html

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Night Plane Descends on Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park this Saturday

Veteran local band Night Plane to play free concert Saturday, June 8

Get ready for longtime local favorites Night Plane, who will be playing originals and classic hits at Music on the Mountain this weekend. Although they are often joined by additional musicians, this weekend’s Night Plane will be an acoustic trio comprised of Jimmy Dykann, Haden Gregg, and John Zajicek. Night Plane has been in existence since 1979, and they have been all over the country together: they recorded their debut album Night Plane in Los Angeles in 1982 and completed another album in New York in the 1990s. They are currently promoting a re-release of their first album on vinyl, which features four new original songs.

“We mix it up, we like to play old rock and blues classics, maybe throw some reggae in there, but we also write a lot of our own material,” says Dykann. Dykann and Gregg are the primary songwriters, and they have been writing together since before they even had a band, in the 1970s. “We mainly just like to write about what’s going on in our lives,” added Dykann.

Night Plane has been out in California doing shows to promote the re-release, but they are back in the Valley for the summer. They play mostly private parties, but they will be appearing July 3rd in the park in Basalt and also at a benefit for the Aspen Deaf Camp with the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band this summer.

The band has played with the likes of John Denver, Jimmy Buffett, and a ton of other musicians who passed through the Roaring Fork Valley throughout the decades. “We played with just about everybody that came through in the ‘70s and ‘80s. We opened a lot of shows. There’s been a good group of local players here for 40 years and we’ve had a lot of great shows around here.”

This will be Night Plane’s second appearance at Music on the Mountain. “We’re looking forward to going up on the mountain and playing. It’s always fun,” says Dykann. “The views, the people…it’s a great concert venue. We love it; outdoor shows are what we love. We were well-received last year, a lot of our friends came up. It’s always nice to have locals come to our shows.”

Don’t miss the chance to see these Colorado legends in their element, mountain-top this Saturday, June 8 for a free concert.  Bring at least one can of food for a free tram ride to the top, where you can enjoy rides, drink specials, and much more. It will also be the last Music on the Mountain concert until August, so make sure to follow Dykann’s advice and “Come see us!”

For ticket information, go to Glenwood Caverns’ Music on the Mountain

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Already Gone is All Ready to Go at Glenwood Caverns

Already Gone performs this Saturday at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park

After a successful kick-off concert with Doctor Robert on Friday, the Music on the Mountain series continues with Already Gone performing this Saturday, June 1st at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park!

The popular local band, known for covering a wide variety of musical genres, is a Glenwood Caverns favorite: this will be their third year playing Music on the Mountain. “We look forward to it every year!” says Lisa Poplish, lead singer of the group that also includes Eddie Muniz on drums, Mark Chenoweth on lead guitar, Randy DeHerrera on saxophone and keyboards, and Billy Conn on bass. Poplish’s powerful, spirited female voice is perfectly complimented by the male band members. “The guys pull off some pretty impressive back up vocal harmonies!” says Poplish.

“We strive to play a little something for everyone in the crowd,” Poplish says. “As individuals, we have quite different tastes in music, which accounts for our extraordinarily diverse song list.” Poplish cites Grace Potter as a favorite artist to cover, but the band enjoys playing a range of everything including funk, R&B, and straight up rock ‘n’ roll. “Audiences can expect high energy brought by talented musicians, a wide variety of music, and just an all-around good time!” Poplish added.

As far as the band’s name, Poplish admits that “coming up with a name, I would say, was one of our most difficult feats thus far. We spent hours in the band’s infancy in Mark’s basement studio racking our brains for band names. We had several viable options written down, and then the Eagles song (“Already Gone”) came on. We were all singing it, and I said ‘How about Already Gone?’ The name ended up sticking.”

The band has been together for about four years (and many of the band members played together in a previous group called In the Pocket). Their time together has created close bonds. “We are truly like family,” says Poplish. These guys are some of my best friends, and I think that shows when we are on stage. We really enjoy playing music together.”

They’ve also had some interesting experiences along the way. “Once, out on the road, we were all crammed into a big Dodge truck headed out of town to play a wedding. The driver, who shall remain nameless, drove almost an hour in the wrong direction, insisting the whole time that we were on the right track. Thankfully we had given ourselves plenty of time to get there and the wedding went off without a hitch!”

Already Gone travels extensively around the state, playing tons of festivals, outdoor concerts, weddings, and private parties. They will be opening the July 10th Glenwood Summer of Music concert in Two Rivers Park.

Come check out Already Gone’s robust sound for yourself this Saturday. They’ll be ready for you! “Come party with us! We can’t wait to see you all there!” says Poplish.

To find pictures, videos, music, bios and much more, visit Already Gone’s website: www.alreadygone-live.com. For concert information, go to http://glenwoodcaverns.com/music-on-mountain-glenwood-springs.html.

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Summer Music on the Mountain Kick-Off Party a Success!

Top: Overview of Friday night's kick-off party.
Bottom: View of west Glenwood Springs and the Colorado River at dusk from the Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park Viewing Deck
                                 photos on this page by Doug Davis

Memorial Day typically signals the unofficial start of summer, but Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park kicked off summer early with the start of the Music on the Mountain summer concert series on Friday night. The mountain was alive with activity, music, rides, and good times!

Doctor Robert, a Beatles tribute band, played a ton of songs from the Beatles catalogue (and took numerous audience requests) until late into the evening, performing rousing renditions of “Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da,” “Come Together,” and many more, inspiring people of all ages to get out and dance. During band breaks, you could hear the screams coming from the Giant Swing as riders soared to new heights 1300 feet above the Colorado River!

Doctor Robert plays Beatles favorites at Music on the Mountain

There were clear skies and balmy temperatures on the mountain for the kick-off party–you could wear shorts without getting cold, even well into the night. Our wet spring has meant that everything is looking really green, which gives way to gorgeous viewing of the surrounding mountains, Colorado River and the Roaring Fork Valley.

The views, especially at sunset, were even more spectacular atop the Cliffhanger Roller Coaster, on the Mine Wheel, and on the Soaring Eagle Zip Ride! A trip on the Alpine Coaster was a zooming thrill ride through an abundance of wildflowers.

It was all fun for a good cause, too–Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park collected a total of 866 cans of food to be donated to the Lift Up Food Bank of Glenwood.

The smallest concert-goers were some of the biggest fans of Doctor Robert!

!

The next concert will be this Saturday, June 1st, with locals’ favorite Already Gone, drink specials, and a free tram ride with the donation of at least one can of food. Come join the fun!

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