Basalt’s summer starts to sizzle Saturday |

Basalt’s summer starts to sizzle Saturday

The Motors on Midland car show has been a popular draw on Midland Avenue in Basalt the last four summers. It kicks off Basalt's summer activities on Saturday.
Shayla Groves/design finch courtesy photo |


Basalt’s summer events kick off this weekend with the Motors on Midland car show, 5 to 8 p.m. downtown, and the Summer Market on Sunday on Midland Spur from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Summer will explode with events starting this weekend in Basalt with organizers bringing back tried and true favorites such as the Summer Market and launching new happenings like Movies in the Park.

Basalt Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Robin Waters said no one will be able to say there’s nothing happening in the town this summer. “The truth is, there’s so much going on,” she said.

The chamber collaborated with the town government, Basalt Downtown Business Association, Willits Town Center and individual people or businesses to load the calendar.

“Events in Basalt tell the story of what’s going on in Basalt overall,” Waters said. People are working together in a degree that wasn’t achieved before, she said.

The first event of the season will be the fifth annual Motors on Midland car show. The sweet rides will be on display from 5 to 8 p.m. downtown. There will be live music by Aspen 440 and a beer garden that will raise proceeds for the Art Base, the nonprofit community art center.

The Summer Market also fires back up on Sunday. Food vendors, artisans and community groups will display their products and services at booths along Midland Spur, in front of Town Hall and Saxy’s. The popular market will run 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. each Sunday through Sept. 25.

Willits celebrates redesigned park

Revelers won’t have to wait long for the next big event. The Willits Summer Splash will be held June 15 to celebrate the redesign of Triangle Park and the addition of a water fountain play area and stage.

The party at Willits Town Center’s signature park will be from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. It will feature music by Haden Gregg, Dana Underwood and Hap Harriman as well as Wanda and The Assets. There will also be kids’ activities. Aspen Olympic snowboarder Chris Klug will MC the event.

Once July hits, Basalt’s free summer concert series will kick in. There will be three concerts at Willits’ Triangle Park on Wednesdays in July and four concerns at Lions Park downtown in August.

Michael Waters was hired by the town of Basalt to produce the series. He said the genres include blues, bluegrass, Americana, new folk, rock, pop and Latin-World Beat. “The line-up includes a mix of favorite local bands and touring bands (Johnny O Band, I Draw Slow, Brothers Keeper, Paper Bird),” he said in an email.

The concert series features The Johnny O Band on July 13; Frank Martin & The Ravens July 20; and I Draw Slow July 27, all at Triangle Park in Willits.

In August, the music switches to Lions Park with Brothers Keeper Aug. 3; Let Them Roar Aug. 10; Valle Musico Aug. 17; and Paper Bird Aug. 24.

Movies in the Park

Basalt native Haley Thompson returned to her hometown after college and working in major cities of the world — New York, Los Angles and Paris — and brought back something she loved. All three cities screened movies in outdoor spaces after dark.

“It’s a huge thing in all the cities. I miss that,” Thompson said. “It’s good for families and to bring all people together.”

The key to success is making it fun. Attendees will be encouraged to dress in costume for the various flicks, Thompson said.

The town of Basalt provided seed money to turn the concept into reality. The organizers bought a 16-foot screen, projector and four speakers. They will start small this summer, with five screenings, then aim to expand in the future.

Thompson solicited movie ideas on the Basalt Community Page on Facebook and got an enthusiastic response, so that bodes well.

The outdoor movies will be screened in Lions Park on periodic Saturday evenings. The launch is on July 9 with “The Princess Bride” and followed July 23rd with “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” — the iconic audience participation flick. Thompson said parents might want to check to see if it is appropriate for their children.

The series continues Aug. 13 with the foreign film “Local Hero” and continues Aug. 27 with “Dirty Dancing.” It concludes with a twin bill Sept. 10 with “Labyrinth” featuring David Bowie and Prince’s “Purple Rain.”

The screenings will be free. There will be food trucks, and beer and wine sales. Attendees are asked to use the cash bar rather than bring their own.

“We’re not charging admission, so that’s where we’re making our money,” Thompson said.

Go to the Basalt Chamber’s website for a comprehensive list of summer events:


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