Free concerts, cheap booze |

Free concerts, cheap booze

Son Volt, with singer-songwriter Jay Farrar, center, performs Saturday in Snowmass Village's Massive Music & Movies series. (Courtesy Mark Ray)

SNOWMASS VILLAGE Beer will be as cheap as $2 Thursday when the Snowmass Free Music Series kicks off its summer season with the controversial new booze ban in effect.The BYOB (bring your own beverage) days on Fanny Hill are over, and bags/coolers will be checked at two entrances as the crowd files onto the hill for a free performance by War, the long-running, multiethnic street band that fuses rock, jazz, Latin and R&B grooves. The entrances are on Elbert Lane and at the end of the Snowmass Village mall.

Attendees who don’t bring bags or coolers will be directed into a pass-through lane for quick access to the outdoor venue. Those who haven’t heard about the new alcohol policy will be able to claim-check and pick up alcohol when leaving Fanny Hill.Proceeds from the sale of alcoholic beverages at the site will go to local nonprofits. Three serving bars and four roving vendors will sell drinks; sales are cash only.

According to concert organizers, several varieties of beer will be available for $2 or $3, while a Bacardi mojito will go for $3. Red and white wines will be for sale by the glass for $2 and $6. Wines will also be available by the bottle for prices ranging from $10 to $50.The concerts begin at 6 p.m. Thursdays.

Getting there: Those heading to the concert grounds from Aspen or downvalley are advised to take a bus or drive to the Rodeo Lot on Brush Creek Road on the outskirts of Snowmass Village. Buses will be running from 5:20 p.m. until after the show between the lot and the mall.Buses will also run at 15 and 45 minutes after the hour – their usual schedule – from Rubey Park in downtown Aspen. The Roaring Fork Transportation Authority is planning extra capacity for the show; no word on whether there will be a direct bus to Snowmass or if riders must transfer at the Brush Creek park-and-ride. The fare to Snowmass Village is $3 for adults and $2 for youths 16 and younger; bus drivers do not make change.This weekend: The first Massive Music & Movies event of the season begins Friday with a selection of short films – “The Lighter Side of Aspen Shortsfest” – at 7:30 p.m. in The Cabaret Room at the Silvertree Hotel. At 6 p.m. Saturday, singer-songwriter Keller Williams takes the Fanny Hill stage, then Son Volt at 7:30, followed by a laser-light show. The events are free.

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