Recession wont ruin Basalts reasons to party

Aspen Times Staff ReportAspen, CO Colorado

BASALT Whats a small town with a humble budget to do during a recession? Party, of course. And between the town government, the chamber of commerce and citizens groups, Basalt has plenty of parties scheduled this summer.The town government hopes to attract 1,000 or more people to a pig roast June 6 to kick off an innovative promotion. The new farmers and artisans market also will create a party atmosphere in downtown Basalt throughout the summer and into fall.One of the best parties of 2008 is returning when Basalsa swings around again in June. River Days will try an appropriate new location this year to try to establish its identity. And Wednesday nights will be hopping again with the Basalt Chamber of Commerces Summer Music Series.Heres a look at the list:Stimulus package kickoff: The town and chamber of commerce teamed to set up a program that rewards shoppers for spending in Basalt stores and restaurants. Shoppers will be a $30 gift certificate good at participating business once they accumulate $300 in purchases. The town will host a pig roast on Saturday, June 6, in Lions Park to kick the program off right. Details are still to be announced.Basalsa returns: A group of townspeople threw a party last year to help bridge the gap between the gringo and Latino communities. It was a hit, with more than 500 people showing up. Basalsa featured a mariachi band and salsa lessons.The event will return to Lions Park Saturday, June 13, according to Pete McBride, one of the organizers. There will be live mariachi, a Latino DJ, salsa lessons, food, piatas and possibly a tamale-tasting competition, McBride said. Taqueria el Nopal will sell food, and people will be allowed to bring their own libations.I strongly believe that music, laughter and dance are great tools to overcome differences and highlight some of the diversity we are lucky to have in the valley, McBride said. It should also prove to be just an energetic, fun fiesta for the entire community.Summer music series: The Basalt Chamber of Commerce is again arranging a music series that will alternate between downtown Basalt and Willits Town Center from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday nights. The series kicks off with Jimmy Ibbotson at Lions Park in downtown Basalt on June 10. It shifts to Triangle Park in Willits for Straight Shot & the S Curves on June 17.The rest of the lineup is: Frank Martin and the Postmark Band, downtown, June 24; H3 and Bobby Mason, Willits, July 1; The Mike Mauer Band, downtown, July 8; Brad Mansovetz, Willits, July 15; The Matt Clark Band, downtown, July 22; and The Redtones, Willits, July 29.Basalt Sunday Market: A citizens group is nurturing strong support for an event it hopes will be a centerpiece for the community for years to come. The Basalt Sunday Market will launch Sunday, June 21, and continue each Sunday through Oct. 4. There will be a variety of vendors featuring produce, prepared foods, merchandise and art. The market will be open from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., rain or shine, at Lions Park and a short section of the Midland Spur near town hall and Saxys.River Days: River Days is moving closer to the Roaring Fork River this year. The event will be held from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 15, at Old Pond Park near downtown Basalt. The one-day festival will feature music, games, food booths and a beer tent.